Why Using Tech Will Lower Your Car Insurance Rates
Technology is everywhere these days, including in vehicles. For example, modern cars have backup cameras, parking sensors, and touch-screen displays. These, along with other driver-assist and safety features, are designed to prevent accidents and protect vehicle occupants. Therefore, one might think that would translate into car insurance savings. After all, many insurers give their policyholders discounts when risks get reduced.
In certain cases, drivers can see auto insurance savings because of safety and tech features. Meanwhile, deals won’t enter the picture on other occasions due to technologies. Hence, people can get confused about whether various items will save them money or not. Still, you shouldn’t fret if you’re currently in that category. The information provided will give you a better understanding of where tech insurance discounts can be found.
After acquiring the data, it’ll be time to obtain some car insurance quotes. Then, when the figures begin trickling in through your email, you’ll be able to see where your savings will come from. Not to mention, the next time you’re shopping for a new vehicle, you’ll know what tech to look for to save on your auto insurance coverage. That will be helpful, especially once you have an expensive car note on your hands, as you’ll want all the savings you can find to ensure no financial hardships come your way.
Not only do modern vehicles have exceptional safety features, but they also have anti-theft technologies and devices. Therefore, if your ride has a burglar alarm, an electronic tracking system, kill switch, or another type of anti-theft technology, there might be an auto insurance discount available for you. Of course, you may also save because of non-tech-related anti-theft items such as steering wheel locks and tire locks. Therefore, if your car has all it could ever need to keep thieves at bay, be sure to discuss that with insurers because it may save you some money on your insurance rate.
Pay By the Mile
Technology also makes it possible for vehicle owners to purchase insurance on an as-needed basis. Various companies offer pay-by-the-mile policies. When you choose one of them, you’ll have to send the auto insurance company a picture of the car’s odometer as specified. Providing that you’re like almost everyone else, you probably have a smartphone all but attached to your hand. Thus, capturing an image and hitting send shouldn’t be a big deal.
Data Tracking Technology
People often feel like they pay too much for auto insurance. That’s because the rates they pay are not necessarily customized. Yes, factors like gender, location, and car type determine how much a person will spend. However, auto insurance rates are largely based on statistical averages. Hence, good drivers sometimes wind up paying just as much as bad drivers for coverage.
That’s why if you are a motorist that practices safe and defensive driving, you may want to find an insurance provider that uses data-tracking technology. After signing up, you’ll likely receive a device that plugs into your vehicle. Don’t worry. There are no tools required or anything like that. Instead, there should be a diagnostic port just below your dash. That is where the piece plugs, and it should be small enough that it won’t get in your way.
For instance, Progressive currently offers Snapshot in 37 states, and its tool is only palm-sized. Basically, this unit collects data from a car’s onboard computer and sends it back to the company over a cellular network. It accumulates information about mileage, braking rates, and more. After 30 days, the policyholder may receive an initial discount. But then, once the six-month mark arrives, the tool goes back to the company, and the client might qualify for a discount of up to 30 percent.
Not all Progressive customers will receive such high discounts, though. For example, an article on the Kiplinger website says the average discount with Snapshot is 10 to 15 percent. Those interested in participating in the program should know that there is no fee to enroll. Plus, the company can’t increase your rates because of the data it collects.
Electronic Stability Control
Electronic stability control, or ESC for short, is standard technology now. This feature began getting installed on all vehicles in 2012. It monitors the driver’s steering inputs and adjusts the brakes or engine power accordingly to ensure the car stays on its intended course. Also, the ESC system is designed to prevent sideways skidding and rollovers. According to The Zebra, electronic stability control reduces the risk of a single-car accident by half.
Then, as for a fatal rollover, the ESC system lowers that risk by as much as 80 percent. But, how much can you save because of it? Research shows that policyholders can receive annual insurance savings of $6.88 for their cars having electronic stability control.
What Tech Won’t Get You Discounts
As mentioned, just because your ride has the latest and greatest technology, that doesn’t mean insurance savings will be headed your way. There are many different types of automotive tech that don’t qualify for discounts. Some common items that typically do not make the cut in this regard include:
- HUD or head-up display
- Night vision
- Lane departure warning
- Parking assistance
- Blind-spot monitoring
Additionally, a collision preparation system usually doesn’t equal insurance savings either. These units use flashing lights, sounds, or vibrations to alert drivers when they are about to collide with other cars. It is recommended that consumers look for vehicles with this feature while shopping for new vehicles. Even still, insurers don’t offer any discounts for it.
If your primary objective is to lower your insurance rates using tech, a dash camera might not be the way to go. This is because, according to Insurance Panda, no major insurers in the U.S. offer discounts for dash cams. But that doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t invest in one. People sometimes cannot prove who made a mistake in an accident.
You’ll have video evidence to support your position with a dash camera. Then, you won’t get pegged for an at-fault accident, which could make your premiums skyrocket. Insurance rates can jump between 50 and 80 percent from a single at-fault auto accident. So, install a dash cam, and hopefully, it will reveal the true culprit in a crash, preventing your policy costs from increasing significantly. Just don’t expect to save on your premiums because of it.
The Final Words
Some vehicle technologies can get you auto insurance discounts. However, the savings might not be all that noticeable. It depends on the type of tech and if there is research showing the feature keeps people safe. So, whenever obtaining quotes, be sure to inform the auto insurance company about the high-tech features of your car. You might qualify for one or more discounts that will help you save some money on premiums.
According to a 2018 AAA survey, three out of four motorists believe advanced car safety features are useful. Therefore, you’ll definitely want your new vehicle to come with them. And, if you can save money on your auto insurance along the way, that’s just icing on the cake.