Question: I went to bed last night and left my car’s sunroof open. The next morning, I found a lot of water in the vehicle, and my electrical components were acting funny. Turns out a rainstorm passed through during the night. Would my insurance cover this? I have comprehensive coverage.

Answer: It depends on the specific terms of your auto insurance policy, especially the comprehensive coverage portion, whether this type of damage would be covered. There is a good chance that the water damage won’t be covered.

Several main perils are covered by comprehensive coverage, such as theft, vandalism, fire and striking an animal. Some policies also cover water damage, but in many cases, the policy is specific that the damage has to be from rising water or floodwaters. 

In general, comprehensive coverage will cover damage from water if the situation that caused the damage was from a covered event. For instance, if vandalism or an extreme weather condition (like a hailstorm) caused your sunroof to break and rainwater to get into your vehicle, then your car’s interior and electrical components that were damaged would usually be covered.

Water damage due to negligence (failure to use reasonable and ordinary care to close the sunroof before a rainstorm) may not be covered. It will all depend upon the exact terms of your auto insurance policy and what perils your specific comprehensive coverage covers. 

Comprehensive is sometimes referred to as “other than collision” because it covers various physical damage to your vehicle caused by situations that are not covered by collision coverage. But comprehensive still doesn’t cover every kind of damage your car could sustain. Policy terms and the covered perils vary from one insurer to another, so what may be covered by one auto insurer may not be covered by another.

Review the comprehensive coverage part of your policy to see which perils are covered and which are excluded. If you’re still unable to determine if this event is covered, call up your agent or a claims representative.

Even if you find that the damage could be covered, it’s a good idea to check into the cost of the repairs before making a claim. You may find that the cost of repairs is less than your comprehensive deductible amount

— Penny Gusner contributed to this story.

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Executive Editor

Laura is an award-winning editor with experience in content and communications covering auto insurance and personal finance. She has written for several media outlets, including the USA Today Network. She most recently worked in the public sector for the Nevada Department of Transportation.