Does Car Insurance Cover Flood Damage?

Car with flood damage covered by car insurance

If your car has suffered water or flood damage, you might be wondering if your car insurance will cover it. Here’s everything you need to know about flood damage, what coverage you need and some helpful tips to prevent water damage to your car.

Comprehensive Coverage and Flood Damage

Your car insurance will cover flood damage to your vehicle if you have comprehensive coverage. This is typically the only way to protect your vehicle from flood damage, since most homeowners and flood insurance policies do not include coverage for cars.

Comprehensive coverage is an optional insurance coverage that pays for damage to your car not related to a collision. This includes things like:

  • Natural disasters and storms
  • Fires
  • Theft
  • Vandalism
  • Damage caused by hitting an animal

Comprehensive coverage is not typically required for car insurance policies. However, you may be required to carry comprehensive coverage if you have a loan or lease. Check in with your insurance company to see if you have it.

Assessing Flood Damage in Vehicles

Remember, it’s never safe to drive or walk in floodwaters. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than half of all flood-related drownings happen when a vehicle is driven into floodwaters. The next highest percentage of flood-related deaths is due to walking into or near floodwaters. 

If your car is submerged, do not attempt to start it. If there is water in the engine, attempting to start it can cause damage beyond repair. 

Determine how deep the car was submerged. It’s possible that water did not enter the cabin or any parts susceptible to damage.

Try to dry your vehicle as soon as possible. You may need to have a towing service move your car to higher ground to avoid further damage.  

Use a wet and dry vacuum to remove standing water, and use towels to dry the seats. Remember to check any compartments. Take anything removable like floor mats out. Open the doors and keep air flowing with a fan. Note the kind of water your vehicle was in. Salt water is more corrosive and can cause more serious damage to your car.

Filing a Claim for Flood Damage

We know that filing any kind of car insurance claim can be stressful. Our unique claims services will simplify the process, getting you back on the road in no time.

  1. File Your Claim
    Please have your policy number ready. You can file a claim online or by contacting us directly.
  2. Assignment and Tracking of the Claim
    After you report your car insurance claim, you’ll receive a claim number to help track its progress. We’ll also assign you a friendly representative to answer any questions you may have.
  3. Damage Evaluation
    If your vehicle has damage and the applicable coverage applies, we offer these convenient options to get you back on the road as soon as possible:
    • CarPicsSM Photo Appraisals: Eliminate the need to schedule a claims inspection and receive your estimate within hours. You may even get paid that same day.*
    • Crashbusters® Mobile Claim Service: Have a representative meet you to appraise the damage at a time and place that’s convenient for you, oftentimes, issuing you a check on the spot.
    • Door to Door Valet Claim Service®: Let us pick up your car and handle the repair process from start to finish. If you have rental coverage, we’ll even coordinate a rental car.
  4. Receive Your Claim Settlement
    Based on your situation, Plymouth Rock may pay your claim to the repair shop or we may reimburse you directly. Your claim payment will be based on the terms and coverage in your car insurance policy.

Deductibles and Flood Damage Coverage

Since flood damage is covered under your comprehensive coverage, you need to pay your deductible when you file a claim. A deductible is your share of the cost for an insurance claim. A deductible is not the same as your insurance premium, which is what you pay to maintain your policy. It’s what you pay before your insurance starts paying for expenses.

For example, say your comprehensive deductible is $500 and it costs $2,000 to fix your flood-damaged car. In this case, you would pay $500 and your insurance will cover the remaining cost.

Gap Insurance and Flood Damage

A vehicle flooding can quickly cause enough damage that can total your car. This could be financially devastating if you just got that car and still owe money on it.

Typically, lenders will require payment in full for the loss of your car. If you leased your car, you’re still obligated to pay for the monthly installments on your totaled vehicle. Totaling a leased vehicle doesn’t void the lease contract.

You can protect your investment with Loan/Lease Gap coverage. This coverage pays for the difference between what your car is worth and what you still owe on it. It can help free you from having to make payments on a car you can no longer drive.

New Car Replacement coverage from Plymouth Rock can also give you peace of mind when you have a new vehicle. We will pay the cost of replacement for the same make, model and year of your car, if available, if you experience a total loss as the original owner and your car was two model years old or less at the time.

Please note you can’t combine Loan/Lease Gap coverage with New Car Replacement coverage.

Preventative Measures for Flood Protection

While floods may happen suddenly, there are still a few preventative measures to better protect your car from flood damage. Here are some tips to avoid water-related risks to your car.

Stay on top of weather alerts. If there’s a flood warning for your area, move your car to higher ground if possible. This also means to avoid parking by flood-prone areas, like river banks or bodies of water.

Again, never drive through floodwater. Water can be deceptively deep and dangerous- just six inches is enough to float a car. Water could also enter the intakes and flood your engine. Even if you have a lifted vehicle, it’s best to turn around and go another way.


Flooding doesn’t just mean water from below- heavy rain and snow can flood your car as well. Make sure the seals around your windows and doors are in good condition. The seals on older cars may become brittle and less effective over time, so have a trusted mechanic replace them if yours are worn.

Keep the rain channels and drainage holes on your car clear of debris. These help prevent water from pooling up and flooding into the cabin of your car. Typically, these are located by the bottom of the windshield and trunk opening.

Your car insurance will cover damage to your car as a result of natural disasters if you carry comprehensive coverage.

Water damage may not be apparent immediately. It could take months or even years for corrosion to be noticeable. Electronics can be damaged relatively quickly when exposed to moisture.

Now Let’s Talk About You
Do you have the right coverage for your vehicle? We’d love to chat with you about it. Call us at 855-993-4470 or speak to a local agent.

If you’d rather not talk, you can get a quote quickly and easily online. Just enter your ZIP code to get started and see how much you could save!

* Certain restrictions apply.