Does insurance cover hydro-locked engine?
Driving down the highway in a thundering storm as water bounces off your windshield and the puddles on the sides of the road grow deeper can be nerve-wracking. Then, as you descend down an incline, you notice what seems to be a particularly deep puddle at the bottom of the drop.
Cautiously you slow your car and ease your way into waist-deep water, gradually making your way through the hazard when you start to hear the engine laboring, sputtering and then seizing up completely! Suddenly you are faced with the damage done by a hydrolocked engine, and you immediately become thankful that you have properly insured your vehicle ahead of time, so a few phone calls is all it takes to get the assistance you need.
What Is A Hydrolocked Engine?
Hydrolock is actually an abbreviation for hydrostatic lock, which occurs if water gets into the engine and disrupts the internal combustion process. Having comprehensive auto insurance that covers you if your car becomes hydrolocked is important for your safety and financial security.
The flood of water into the engine prevents the internal combustion process and can cause the engine to seize entirely. If that happens, the engine will not run at all because the fluid entering the combustion chamber prevents the cycle from being completed. Since the liquid can’t be compressed the way air would be, the pistons jam to a stop inside their cylinders. Often the repair cost depends on how much water has been taken in, how long it was allowed to rest, and how hard the engine attempted to turn over when it was misfiring. Hydrolock affecting multiple cylinders can even require a complete replacement of the entire engine.
Different Coverage Types
Comprehensive coverage may protect you from hydrolock damage expenses, but it’s important to make sure your policy handles the specific cause and effect. For example, does it cover damage from driving through puddles, weather events, and natural disasters?
Filing the Insurance Claim
If you experience a hydrolocked engine, your first step will be to call your insurance company and place a claim. The company will send an insurance adjuster assigned to your case, and they will complete a full investigation into the damage done and the circumstances surrounding that damage.
When there is ample evidence that the damage was caused by accident due to water in your engine from a specific event like flooding, puddles on the highway, or something similar there is a strong chance the insurance company will accept your claim and pay for any repairs less the amount of any deductible required by your policy.
However, if the damage seems to have been caused by a willful act like “joy riding” through road hazards, or if there is engine coolant or another liquid inside the engine, the insurance company will likely conclude that any hydrolocked damage done is the result of improper usage, and it becomes unlikely the repairs would be covered by auto insurance, leaving the car owner to have their claim would be rejected and be responsible for any repairs.
Are there exceptions to coverage for hydrolock?
Any form of insurance fraud or intentional misconduct is always an exception to the coverage stated in your policy with regard to hydrolock. The purpose of comprehensive hydrolock insurance coverage is to protect innocent car owners from unintended damage caused by accidental exposure to flooding. A deliberate attempt to file claims for financial gain that would unjustly enrich the claimant or any actions by a car owner that subject a vehicle to damage that would otherwise be easily avoided are simple examples of some of the exceptions to coverage for hydrolock damage.
Make sure to read your coverage documentation to get the full details on what your specific policy covers. There are variations from one policy to the next at times when it comes to insurance. Make sure to get the coverage you need by comparing car insurance policies and finding the best prices for car insurance using the tools here on this site. Hydrolock damage insurance coverage can save people a lot of money.