How to protect your car from hail and storm damage
25 January 2023
Hail can be extremely dangerous for both you and your property – especially your car.
Some areas around Australia can experience hail stones the size of golf balls, capable of smashing windows and denting cars.
If hail is forecast for your area, there are a few things you can do to prepare.
What happens to your home can happen to your car, so make sure you protect it from hail damage with these easy tips.
If you can park undercover, of course do that. But if you can’t, and hail is predicted, cover it up early. It’s much easier to do it while the weather is still good.
If no cover is available you can use blankets or a couple of doonas to help you protect the car. In fact, it makes sense to keep a couple of blankets or picnic blankets in the car for cover if you get stuck out and about.
If you’re really stuck, your floor mats can work as a cover.
Focus on the windscreen and wait for the storm to pass so you can at least make it home safely, but remember: cars can be fixed.
So please, keep yourself safe.
These storm season how-to’s are proudly brought to you by Suncorp Insurance.
If it starts to hail while you’re on the road, stay calm and look for cover.
Check whether there is a shopping centre or large supermarket nearby. Many of those have undercover parking areas that can provide shelter.
If that isn’t an option, most petrol stations are covered. Try not to park at a pump as you may prevent others from getting petrol – instead, park in a vacant bay and wait out the storm.
Protect your car
If there’s no shelter in sight, there are still things you can do.
If you have a tarp or picnic blanket stashed in your boot, use it to cover the car. Even something simple like this can dampen the impact of the hail and minimise the potential damage. It’s worth noting that you may need to secure the edges so they don’t blow away, or better yet consider if you want to invest in a dedicated hail blanket!
If you don’t have anything like that, consider throwing a jacket over your windshield to protect the glass. Your car’s body might cop a belting, but you’ll hopefully still be able to drive to safety. If your windshield gets smashed, you won’t be able to drive at all.
Get help after a storm
If your windshield has been damaged or your car isn’t safe to drive after a storm, Suncorp Comprehensive Car Insurance policies automatically include towing and storage to help you out in a pinch. Simply give our claims team a call and they’ll lend a hand.
Check the PDS to find out the terms, conditions and exclusions of your policy, and to see what else is included in the cover.
If a hailstorm is on the horizon, you may be able to purchase a cheap gazebo from your local hardware or party supplies store. You don’t have to spend that much, and they’re easy to set up and take down.
Keep in mind, these can be pretty light, so tie yours down to something heavy.
If you don’t have time to buy new gear, think about what you may have on hand – for example, an old doona can absorb some of the impact from hailstones. Just remember to stay safe.
Consider insuring your car for hail damage
Weather is unpredictable. You can take steps to minimise the risk of damage, but damage can still occur – and when it does, having the right cover can help you repair it with minimal fuss.
Suncorp Comprehensive Car Insurance will allow you to claim for loss or damage to your vehicle caused by hail, storms, fire and floods. Be sure to read the Product Disclosure Statement to decide if it’s right for you.
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^ Roadside Assist services are available 24 hours after purchasing or adding the cover to your insurance policy. For full coverage details, please see the Suncorp Roadside Assist Terms and Conditions.
Insurance is issued by AAI Limited ABN 48 005 297 807 trading as Suncorp Insurance. Limits and exclusions apply. Read the Product Disclosure Statement before buying this insurance. The Target Market Determination is also available. This advice has been prepared without taking into account your particular objectives, financial situations or needs, so you should consider whether it is appropriate for you before acting on it.
The information is intended to be of general nature only. Subject to any rights you may have under any law, we do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss or damage, including loss of business or profits or any other indirect loss, incurred as a result of reliance upon the information. Please make your own enquiries.