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Posted at: Jul 3, 2017, 12:45 AM; last updated: Jul 3, 2017, 12:45 AM (IST)

Be moneywise about your car during monsoon

Be moneywise about your car during monsoon

Mahesh Balasubramanian

Monsoon is here, bringing moments of joy along with share of chaos. While many among us wait for the rains to go on long drives, we shouldn’t forget the fury that the monsoon can unleash. It is the time of the year where you need to take utmost care of yourself and your car.

Here’s a list of easy-to-follow tips to help you stay safe and keep your car running in wet weather.

  • As a part of your monsoon maintenance process, first task you have to do is to keep your four-wheeler or motorcycle covered when not in use. Also, don’t park your car in low-lying areas.
  • Keep a soft (digital) copy of your insurance papers on your phone, in case your physical insurance copy gets drenched in the rains. Also, add the toll-free helpline of your insurance company to your phone’s contact list, in case of any emergency.
  • Ensure windows of your car are closed while parked. Reptiles or insects normally come out of their water-filled dens during the rains, and may make their way to your car through open windows.
  • Make sure that your vehicle tyres are in an excellent condition and fitted with better tread depth before the arrival of monsoon. It will save your vehicle from skidding on slippery roads during the rainy season.
  • While driving through high-rainfall areas with the rising water level, keep the car’s central locking system unlocked. Lower the windows slightly, especially if power operated. There are chances of the doors and windows getting jammed due to electrical failure, trapping the occupants inside. Always carry a hammer in your car kit to deal with such situations.
  • There is a significant rise in accidental damage claims during monsoon, which is often caused by skidding of cars on the wet roads.
  • More claims means letting go of your no-claim bonus (NCB) when you renew your car insurance policy. The NCB is a discount on renewal premium offered to customers who have not made any claim during the policy period and can range between 20 per cent and 50 per cent. Therefore, before filing a claim, it is advisable to evaluate the trade-off between retaining the NCB and making a claim.
  • A comprehensive car insurance policy covers damage to your own vehicle as well as third-party damages. While it is sufficient for accidental repairs to be carried for any damages, it does not cover other associated monsoon risks. For example: engine damage due to driving the vehicle in inundated areas. Hence, it is advisable to opt for smart adds-on for added security and protection. Some add-ons to consider are:
  • Engine protector covers damages to your car due to inundation or seepage of water into the engine.
  • Roadside assistance cover comes in handy in case your car breaks down in the middle of the road and needs to be towed to the nearest garage or runs out of fuel. 
  • Zero depreciation cover ensures full coverage for vehicle or car insurance in case of incident without factoring in for depreciation. This cover is highly recommended if your car is less than 3 years old.
  • Return to invoice cover compensates the on-road price (or invoice value) of your car in case your car is damaged beyond repair or is stolen.
The author is MD and CEO, Kotak Mahindra General Insurance Ltd. The views expressed in this article are his own.

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