Car Towing and Labor Coverage: Everything you need to know

By Randy Luton | Last Updated: 12/15/2022

Key Insights

  • Towing and labor coverage is one of the most basic necessities, yet most drivers avoid it and prefer paying the expense from their pocket.
  • This coverage type is for paying for all the cost of towing your vehicle to the nearest garage in case of a breakdown.
  • It does not cover the cost to repair the vehicle, only the cost to tow and take to the nearest repair shop.
  • Some policies also include labor cost and cost of delivering petrol, diesel, and gas (not the cost of gas, petrol, or diesel only the delivery cost).

We all can relate to the feeling of getting stranded in the middle of nowhere at an odd time and known area. We also knows the difficulty of asking for help from strangers and the stress of paying the labor or towing service adds one more layer to it.

It is obvious that the towing company or repair labor is going to charge extra because of different reasons. You were not aware of the charges in that area so you will have to pay the charges. What if your auto insurance company will pay for the charges of labor and towing your car? This is possible with towing and labor insurance coverage.

And this blog can be your guide to learn everything about towing and labor insurance coverage policy. Let’s get started with a quick introduction.

What is towing and labor coverage?

In simple terms; towing and labor coverage is a type of car insurance policy where you will get coverage from towing and labor charges. Even if you are not aware of the charges in that area you don’t have to worry about paying extra. Or you don’t have to worry about paying extra for odd hours.

You just have to call a mechanic or towing services to take your car to the nearest garage. All the expenses of labor and towing will be taken care of by your auto insurance company.

Isn’t the towing costs covered by my existing policy?

In most instances towing charges are covered by auto insurance policies. But these towing charges are based on your policy.

For example, if you have comprehensive coverage then you will get towing coverage for the scenario where you get hit by a car or you hit another car. This might not be applicable if your car broke down on a highway.

Also; in most cases; labor charges are not included in comprehensive insurance as well. In that case, you will have to pay for the labor charges from your pocket. Hence; your current policy might have towing costs but it will not include labor costs. Always cross-check the terms before making the final decision of buying any policy from any insurance provider.

What is covered by towing and labor insurance coverage?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions about towing and labor coverage policy. Before buying any policy we all want to make it clear what exactly will be covered in that policy to make sure we really need it. The same goes for TL coverage.

Another important thing to keep in mind is; the coverage of any policy depends majorly on the insurance provider. It can vary a lot as per the company standards and policies. If we talk about towing and labor coverage then it generally includes:

  • Charges for towing your car to the nearest garage
  • Labor cost to change the tire of your car
  • Delivery cost for Petrol, Diesel, Water or Gas
  • Battery repair or jump-start cost
  • Locked out of the car resolution services

Some companies only provide coverage for the charges to tow the car and labor costs to change the tire. While others include all the above-mentioned inclusions.

What is not covered in towing and labor coverage?

Another important question that arises in our mind is; what will not be covered in my towing and labor coverage? Other than the fact that TL coverage will provide coverage related to Towing and Labor only, there are some other cases where it will not be applicable.

Again what is not covered varies from company to company and driver to driver but there are some general scenarios as well.

  1. It does not cover the parts in the repair. For example; if you are having issues with the battery then you will get coverage for jump-starting the battery and not for the new battery.
  2. It does not cover the cost of gas, petrol or diesel. If you are out of petrol, gas, or diesel then you get coverage for getting it delivered to you. But your insurance provider will not provide you coverage for the cost of buying it.

Towing Vs. Roadside Assistance Are They Same?

Many drivers get confused between towing and labor coverage and Roadside assistance coverage. In roadside assistance, you don’t have to find the help your auto insurance company will do it. While with TL coverage you will have to find the help and you will just get paid for the expenses to get your car back on the road.

Some companies include roadside assistance coverage in their comprehensive policy while others add towing and labor. Make sure to ask about the coverage type and inclusions before finalizing any policy.

Do I have to buy towing and labor coverage?

Towing and labor coverage is not mandatory as per the state’s requirement laws but it is advisable to buy. Without TL policy you will have to pay for all the charges from your own pocket. If you are someone who prefers road trips over other ways of traveling this can be a basic necessity for you.

We all are not aware of when we will get a flat tire or dead battery. If you are on the roads most of the time then this can happen to you more than once and every time you will have to pay from your own pocket.

The cost of buying towing and labor policy is easily affordable and its benefits are unavoidable. If you can afford to add this to your existing policy then you should add it for your extra coverage.

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How much does towing and labor coverage cost?

And one of the most important sections is here; How much you will have to pay extra to get towing and labor coverage? Generally adding TL coverage to your policy does not increase the cost of your premium much. The average cost of adding TL coverage to an existing coverage is around $12 to $15 per month.

As we always say, the cost of any insurance policy depends on a lot of factors. It can vary by the insurance company and by the type of car or even your age. Even the age of your car also matters significantly. An older car might breaks down on the road than a newer car. So you might get higher rates for your older car as compared to your new car.

How to check the towing and labor coverage limits?

Every insurance policy comes with a coverage limit. Coverage limit is the amount up to which your expenses will be covered. In this case, you will get the coverage limit may be in terms of distance or costing.

For example; some insurance companies keep the coverage limit for 5KMs; you will get towing coverage up to 5KM after that you will have to pay. If the nearest garage is 20KM away from your location then you will have to pay for the 15KMs.

On the other hand; some companies have a limit of $3000. If the towing and labor charges are more than $3000 then you will have to pay from your pocket.

Different drivers will share different information on coverage limits, as it varies from driver to driver. So the best way to check the coverage limits on your policy is to get in touch with your insurance, your company.

Is there any other option?

You might get other options like extending your towing coverage in a comprehensive insurance policy to cover labor charges as well. Or add towing and labor coverage without any extra charges to your existing policy. For that, you will have to get in touch with your existing auto insurance company and ask them about these options.

Other than that; the best option to save money on towing and labor costs is to get regular car maintenance and follow driving precautions. A well-maintained car will not face dead batter or other mechanical issues. Make sure to take your car for regular maintenance and keep a check on the fuel tank as well.

You can learn to change the tire by yourself so you don’t have to pay for the labor charges.

How to add towing and labor coverage to a car insurance policy?

  1. The first step to buy towing and labor coverage are to get in touch with your existing auto insurance company. You will have to cross-check that your existing policy does not include TL coverage already.
  2. The next step is to get a quotation from your existing company to add this coverage to your present policy. Then you can start the process of searching for the rates from car insurance companies in your state.
  3. Getting quotes from different companies and comparing them will help you to make a well-informed and smart decision. You will get detailed information about what each company is offering. And hence it will be able to buy the best policy for you in your budget.
  4. Once you have compared the rates from different auto insurance companies, then you can finalize if you want to add the policy with your present policy or you want to buy it from another company.

After that, all you have to do is pay for your TL coverage policy and you are good to go.

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Over to You!

We hope that this blog might have helped you to understand the impact and benefit of towing and labor coverage on your policy. Are you looking for an affordable way to add towing and labor coverage to your existing policy? Do you need help from experts to suggest which is the best company for your policy? Or are you looking for an effective way to get quotes from different insurance carriers? Then we are here for you.

With RateForce you will get the best support to select the perfect insurance partner for your requirements and budget. Get in touch with us today.

Editorial Guidelines: The above is meant as general information to help you understand the different aspects of auto insurance. This information does not refer to any specific auto insurance policy. Coverages and other features vary between insurers, vary by state, and are not available in all states. References to costs of coverages/repair, average or typical premiums, amounts of losses, deductibles, etc., are indicative and may not apply to your situation. We encourage you to speak to our insurance representative and to read your policy contract to fully understand your coverages.

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Randy Luton is the Founder and CEO of RateForce. He is passionate about InsurTech services and has in-depth knowledge about the auto insurance sector of the USA.