Does Car Insurance Cover Vehicle Airbags?


5 min read

Airbags are among the significant safety innovations of the recent time as they provide vital cushioning to people sitting in a vehicle during a crash. But do you know if your car insurance covers vehicle airbags? Let’s find out!

If you are looking at replacing your vehicle airbag with a new one, it might cost you a lot of money as they are expensive. So, can you use your car insurance to reimburse the car airbag costs while changing them. Do car insurance policies offer vehicle airbag coverage? We will find out the answers to these questions in this post.

Do car insurance offer coverage for vehicle airbags?

Airbag is a support or cushion that provides safety to the driver and the passenger of a car. In case of a crash, the vehicle airbags system inflates to save the driver and passengers to avoid getting them injured.

Over the last many years, thousands of lives have been saved by the use of airbags. That is why the government has imposed many new laws to install a certain count of airbags in a car to save the driver and passengers from injury.

By using an airbag, one can prevent getting injured from the parts within the vehicle in case of collision. Because of government laws and the safety concern, most of the cars (even the economical ones) running on the Indian roads these days use airbags to protect the driver and the passenger of the vehicle.

Airbags can be installed in different places in a vehicle such as in the steering wheel area as front airbags, side airbags, backseat airbags, or knee airbags etc. However, once the airbag is used or it gets inflated during a crash, you have to get it replaced.

Though, you may think about using your comprehensive car insurance policy to replace the airbag or to get coverage against it. But the fact is, it is somewhat complicated.

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Are airbags covered under insurance?

In India, third-party vehicle insurance and comprehensive vehicle insurance are the two kinds of insurances available. Now, as you know, a third-party insurance cover against damages that are caused to third – party property or people. On the other hand, a comprehensive policy allows protection against damages done to both your own car and the third-party car.

So, under a comprehensive car insurance policy, the vehicle owner can get protection against several damages caused to his/her car including damages caused by natural disasters or man-made calamities, accidents, theft and so on.

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In the present scenario, many car manufacturers install several airbags to make sure that the vehicle owner and passengers receive optimum security. But the cost of getting them replaced is very expensive. Be it a luxury car or a standard one, the expenses of getting the airbags replaced is too much.  Moreover, the option of airbag replacement coverage is not there under the third-party insurance policies.

On the other hand, in case of comprehensive policies, they do offer airbag insurance cover but only to a particular limit. Since comprehensive policies for car insurance do not provide the cost of regular vehicle wear and tear called depreciation, they do not offer complete coverage for replacing airbags. But you can avail add-on riders of zero depreciation if you want your comprehensive car insurance policy to cover airbags completely.

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Does depreciation have an impact on your vehicle insurance claim, how?

Usually, your comprehensive car insurance policy allows coverage to your vehicle airbags to a certain extent. The only reason why the airbags are not completely covered under comprehensive car insurance policy is depreciation rates.

So, what is depreciation? Depreciation means the value of your car depreciation caused by the wearing out of its components over a time period. In car insurance, the claim amount paid by the insurer is always less as compared to the market value of the car because of depreciation. If the car is old, the depreciation is more. Depreciation value is evaluated depending on the various parts of the car as well as its age.

Depreciation Rates as Per Vehicle Age

Age of Car Depreciation Percentage Levied
Till 6 months 5%
From 6 months to one year 15%
From one year to two years 20%
From two years to three years 30%
From three years to four years 40%
From four years to five years 50%

Depreciation Rates As Per Vehicle Parts

Car Component (Parts) Depreciation Percentage Levied
Parts made of fiberglass 30%
Paintwork 50%
Parts made of glass Nil
Parts made of nylon/rubber/plastics 50%

As mentioned in the table above, a car owner loses half the airbag claim value due to car depreciation, especially for the part made from nylon. Also, the depreciation goes up as per the age of the vehicle. Hence, if you avail the zero depreciation add-on, you can get the complete reimbursement on the airbag without considering the vehicle’s depreciation value.

A zero-depreciation rider also benefits car owners under conditions like:

  • For new drivers who have started driving recently
  • For owners of expensive cars
  • For owners of new cars
  • If the vehicle’s spare parts are too costly
  • If you drive mostly in areas that are accident prone

To Conclude 

As per the mandate by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, it is compulsory to install a minimum of 6 airbags for all cars. And so, it is important to buy a zero-depreciation rider with your vehicle insurance so that you can get wide coverage and do not have to spend for the airbags from your pocket.

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FAQs on Does Car Insurance Cover Vehicle Airbags?

Do airbags only work with seatbelts?

People who do not use seat belts mostly give this common excuse that they have airbags in their car to protect in case of accidents. However, it is not the right thing to do. Airbags are designed in a way that they work in amalgamation with seat belts to limit the injuries.

Are airbags compulsory only for the driver?

As of now, the government has made it compulsory to have six airbags in all passenger vehicles in India as the minimum requirement. The new rule will be applied from Oct. 1, 2023 and it will also include driver airbags.

What is the car airbag rule in India?

As per the new statement by the Road Transport Ministry, every passenger vehicle in India would be required to have six airbags as the minimum requirement from Oct. 1, 2023.

How important is an airbag to a driver's or passenger's safety?

As per recent reports, there has been a considerable reduction in the number of accidental deaths caused by frontal crashes due to the use of airbags. Hence, airbags are important for the safety of drivers as well as passengers. 

What is an SRS airbag full form?

SRS stands for Supplemental Restraint System, which relates to vehicle airbags.

Which is the safest car in India?

Some safe cars in India include:
Tata Tiago
Tata Tigor
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza
Renault Kiger

Does insurance cover airbags?

Comprehensive cover car insurance policy allows coverage to vehicle airbags to a certain extent. This is because of the depreciation factor of cars and if you do not own a zero-depreciation add-on rider.

Are airbags covered under insurance in India?

To a certain extent the comprehensive cover car insurance policy provides coverage to vehicle airbags in India. However, if you have the zero-depreciation add-on rider, the coverage availed can be extensive without considering depreciation of the vehicle.

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Feb 09, 2023
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PayBima Team
PayBima is an Indian insurance aggregator on a mission to make insurance simple for people. PayBima is the Digital arm of the already established and trusted Mahindra Insurance Brokers Ltd., a reputed name in the insurance broking industry with 17 years of experience. PayBima promises you the easy-to-access online platform to buy insurance policies, and also extend their unrelented assistance with all your policy related queries and services.

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