How Your Car is Covered by Insurance from a Hurricane

An estimated 300,000 to 500,000 vehicles in the Houston area alone could be a total loss due to damage caused by Hurricane Harvey. L.A. Car Connection is sending thoughts and prayers to all those affected by the storm. For those living in Texas, if your vehicle was damaged by the storm, here are a few things to know to get your car covered.

Contact your auto insurance company

If available, have your policy number on hand when you call and let the insurer know the extent of the damage and the number of pictures you’ve taken. Be patient — the insurance company will be inundated with calls from other folks in the same situation, so the more prepared and organized you can be, the better for you and them.

Take Photos

Take lots of pictures and document everything. The more pictures and documentation the better. Don’t forget to ask your mechanic to write observations on any inspection report. Take pictures of the car’s odometer, the interior and inside the trunk as well.

Ask about a Rental Car

Ask about a rental car while you are waiting for the repairs or replacement of your vehicle. Most comprehensive policies will include short-term rental benefits, so take advantage of this coverage. But beware: Many local rental vehicles were probably damaged as well and available rental vehicles will be in short supply while demand will be very high.

Dry Out Your Car

After it’s safe to return to your vehicle, the first thing to do is to start drying out your car and assessing the damage. If the vehicle was submerged up to or over the engine, don’t start it. If there’s water in the engine cylinders, it can cause severe damage if you attempt to start the engine.

Instead, have the vehicle towed to a reputable mechanic who should examine the oil dipstick and drain and inspect the engine oil and transmission fluids. Take pictures of the drained fluids — if there’s any trace of water, then the engine and transmission may be a total loss. There could also be water in your fuel tank, and many of the auto’s electronics may be damaged by water as well.

Buy a New Car with Rebates

Several manufacturers are offering disaster relief rebates. Take advantage of them! Here is a list of those offering rebates:

Fiat Chrysler Disaster Relief Program

What it is: From August 28, Fiat Chrysler (parent company for Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, RAM, FIAT and Alfa Romeo) is offering a $500 disaster relief discount for those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Eligibility: Most new 2017 or 2018 vehicles are eligible such as the RAM 1500, Dodge Durango and Jeep Grand Cherokee. Some exceptions include the Dodge Viper, Jeep Wrangler, Chrysler 200 and SRT models.

To get the discount, you’ll need to show a copy of your insurance claim form to your local dealer listing damage as a result of the hurricane. Residents from select counties in Texas and Louisiana are eligible. View a full list in our dedicated article.

Worth knowing: The offer can be combined with any other promotions, including rebates, special financing rates as well as promotional lease offers.

Expiration: The offer is set to expire January 2, 2018.

Ford Disaster Relief Bonus Program Added August 31

What it is: Effective August 25, Ford and Lincoln are offering $500 Disaster Relief Bonus Cash to those in select counties affected by flooding from Hurricane Harvey.

Eligibility: Most new 2017 and 2018 vehicles are eligible such as the Ford Fusion, Escape, Explorer as well as the popular F-150 and F Super Duty. As usual, specialty vehicles like the Shelby GT350 and Ford GT are excluded.

To qualify, you’ll have to show a copy of your insurance form indicating loss or damage to an existing vehicle as a result of flooding which occurred in August as a result of the hurricane.

Residents of the following Texas counties are eligible: Aransas, Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Harris, Jackson, Kleberg, Liberty, Matagorda, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Victoria and Wharton.

Worth knowing: The offer can be combined with most other promotions, including rebates, special financing rates as well as promotional lease offers. It can even be used in conjunction with Ford Plan Pricing.

Expiration: Like most current Ford offers, the program expires October 2, 2017. However, we think that it will likely be extended given the far-reaching effects of the hurricane.

GM Disaster Relief Bonus

What it is: Starting August 29, GM is offering a $500 discount to customers whose vehicles were damaged as a result of Hurricane Harvey.

Eligibility: All new 2017 or 2018 Chevy, GMC, Buick or Cadillac vehicles are eligible. There are no major exclusions apart from the usual like base versions of the Malibu L, Colorado Base and Cruze L.

The offer is available to residents of the following counties in Texas: Aransas, Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Harris, Jackson, Kleberg, Liberty, Matagorda, Nueces, Refugio, San Patricio, Victoria and Wharton.

To get the discount, simply show your local dealer a copy of your insurance claim form indicating your vehicle was damaged as a result of the hurricane.

Worth knowing: The offer can be combined with any other cashback and financing promotions, including GM Supplier Pricing. The main exclusion is, for some reason, special lease promotions.

Expiration: The offer is set to expire January 2, 2018.

Hyundai Disaster Relief Program

What it is: Beginning August 26, Hyundai and Genesis are offering $750 Disaster Relief Coupon to those affected by Hurricane Harvey.

Eligibility: All new 2017 or 2018 Hyundai and Genesis vehicles are eligible, from the fuel-efficient Elantra and Sonata sedans to the spacious Santa Fe crossover.

To get the discount, you’ll need to show your dealer an official letter from your insurance company (such as the claim form) listing the make and model of your vehicle as well as the damage incurred as a result of the hurricane.

Unlike other automakers, Hyundai isn’t restricting the offer to certain counties in Texas or Louisiana.

Worth knowing: The offer can be combined with any other promotions, including rebates, special financing rates as well as promotional lease offers.

Expiration: The offer is set to expire January 2, 2018.

Kia Disaster Relief Program

What it is: Starting August 31, Kia is offering a $750 discount called the Hurricane Harvey Flood Relief Specialty Incentive Program.

Eligibility: All new 2017 or 2018 Kia vehicles are eligible, including the popular Optima, Sportage, Sorento and others.

To get the discount, you’ll need to show a copy of an insurance claim form listing damage to an existing vehicle that occurred as a result of Hurricane Harvey on or after August 25.

The incentive is available to residents of Texas and Louisiana.

Worth knowing: The offer can be combined with other rebates, special financing rates and promotional lease offers.

Expiration: The offer is set to expire January 2, 2018.

If you know anyone affected by Hurricane Harvey, please share this post with them! We want to help as many as people as possible and are here to offer advice to anyone affected. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to an auto specialist at L.A. Car Connection 818.340.9858

2017-08-31T21:43:57+00:00 August 31st, 2017|