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Old 05-30-2016, 02:48 PM   #1
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Modified car insurance in Ontario

I don't intend to get in an accident or anything but I'm thinking about modified car insurance after hearing a horror story from a friend who's car was written off in a not-at-fault accident and his insurance company denied his claim on grounds of failing to disclose modifications to his car.

I've spent some time looking into it and each company has their own limits regarding approved modifications. Some like Statefarm were fine with strictly appearance modifications like lip kits and wheels, others, like TD, will disqualify a car for running aftermarket exhaust tips. Unfortunately, all of them said coilovers and big brakes are out so I've got a problem if I'm ever involved in an accident.

There is speciality insurance available for hot rods, classics and show cars from Haggerty or Lant but they won't work for me because they place too many restrictions to daily drive the car. The only thing I've found that will cover me is through Facility which I was quoted at $720/mo. For that much, I can get another car and insure that as a daily driver but I can't afford that either.

I'm weighing my options but looking to hear from other people who have experience or knowledge with this. Nearly everywhere else has affordable coverage options for modified cars, usually involving regular inspections but I haven't been able to find anywhere in Ontario that's cool with it.
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Old 05-30-2016, 10:19 PM   #2
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I've never really thought of it this intensely. I've only ever really noticed the box marked "does the vehicle have more than $5k in mods".

I don't understand why a big brake kit nets you no coverage. You can stop faster to avoid an accident.



And if you want to get real technical, most cars use coil over suspension in the front and rear.
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Old 05-30-2016, 10:54 PM   #3
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Insurance companies want no part in trying to deal with crappy upgrades making things worse than stock, especially when it comes to handling and braking.

Yes, good parts improve it, but bad parts can make things MUCH worse than stock. It's just easier for them to say "no dice" to everything.
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Old 05-31-2016, 12:11 AM   #4
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Well what counts as a modification?

If my car needs replacement parts and I opt for some aftermarket coils because they cost the same as OEM is that cosidered modification? If I use a non OEM replacement part is that considered modification. It seems pretty silly overall.

I only had one experience with mods here in the US and the insurance basically didn't care they only said I had to bring the part to the shop and they only gave me the amount insurance covered I had to pay the rest. This was for a wheel so not a real "mod".

I understand if it is some kind of complex mod that takes more work to replace/fix than OEM (say a turbo kit, air ride, someone hellaflushed with very specific suspension work) but a lot of parts bolt in and out just the same as OEM.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:28 AM   #5
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Bolt in and out, yes... but might not be functionally equivalent to stock. OEM would mean 100% OEM, or OEM equivalent.

If you put in a set of really cheap coilovers and get into an accident because the valving was totally wrong for the spring rates and caused you to spin out at a reasonably slow speed when you hit a bump, who's fault is that? Should the insurance company pay out because you made the handling WAY worse and got into an accident?

They're covering a car that has risk factors based on how it was originally built/sold, if you've changed something that alters what they think they're covering, they'll want no part in covering it.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:48 AM   #6
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did your friend try to get money back for the modifications that he made after he totaled the car?




the general rule here is a don't ask don't tell


if you wreck your car, assume that you're paying out of pocket for the replacement of any aftermarket parts, especially when it comes to suspension and shit.


Aside from facility, you really do not have any options in the current insurance environment, and everything you do, including autocross and track, is at your own risk. If you wreck a car at the track, consider it a full write off, cuz if you try to go through insurance, you might win the battle, but you will most likely be black listed and never again have access to reasonable insurance rates and deal with facility for the next decade.
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Old 06-01-2016, 12:06 PM   #7
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^^ the real issue isn't not being covered for modifications, it's being dropped after an accident because of non-disclosure.

Most people don't care so much about mods not being covered as having coverage totally dropped (including liability).
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Old 06-01-2016, 12:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynxis View Post
I don't intend to get in an accident or anything but I'm thinking about modified car insurance after hearing a horror story from a friend who's car was written off in a not-at-fault accident and his insurance company denied his claim on grounds of failing to disclose modifications to his car.

I've spent some time looking into it and each company has their own limits regarding approved modifications. Some like Statefarm were fine with strictly appearance modifications like lip kits and wheels, others, like TD, will disqualify a car for running aftermarket exhaust tips. Unfortunately, all of them said coilovers and big brakes are out so I've got a problem if I'm ever involved in an accident.

There is speciality insurance available for hot rods, classics and show cars from Haggerty or Lant but they won't work for me because they place too many restrictions to daily drive the car. The only thing I've found that will cover me is through Facility which I was quoted at $720/mo. For that much, I can get another car and insure that as a daily driver but I can't afford that either.

I'm weighing my options but looking to hear from other people who have experience or knowledge with this. Nearly everywhere else has affordable coverage options for modified cars, usually involving regular inspections but I haven't been able to find anywhere in Ontario that's cool with it.
What company was your friend with if you don't mind me asking? What kind of modifications did he have?
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Old 06-01-2016, 01:40 PM   #9
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I believe the issue only occurs if you try to claim money for those parts that you never told insurance about or if it's your fault accident. Like you modded the car to 400hp and was speeding and hit a car etc...than they could maybe dig deeper and deny you. So, just drive safe.

BUT, if someone hits you and it's not your fault they have to pay. If not, get a lawyer.

When my Subaru got hit in a parking lot, (i saw it happen) i called insurance right away. Someone from the company came down next day, looked at the damage and wrote me a cheque.

This is what the Subaru looks like. Clearly, not what a 2002 WRX is supposed to look like lol

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Last edited by Mr.Impreza; 06-01-2016 at 01:53 PM.
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Old 06-01-2016, 03:23 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Impreza View Post
I believe the issue only occurs if you try to claim money for those parts that you never told insurance about or if it's your fault accident. Like you modded the car to 400hp and was speeding and hit a car etc...than they could maybe dig deeper and deny you. So, just drive safe.

BUT, if someone hits you and it's not your fault they have to pay. If not, get a lawyer.

When my Subaru got hit in a parking lot, (i saw it happen) i called insurance right away. Someone from the company came down next day, looked at the damage and wrote me a cheque.

This is what the Subaru looks like. Clearly, not what a 2002 WRX is supposed to look like lol

Thanks, this helps a lot! This is the type of story I was looking for.

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What company was your friend with if you don't mind me asking? What kind of modifications did he have?
I just asked and he said his insurance was with BelAir. He has a turbo'd and lowered Dodge Neon SX2.0. He says he didn't want the mods covered but the adjuster saw them and listed them anyway.

It's possible the turbo is why he's having trouble but BelAir is only using vague language like "modifications" and "modified" for everything when discussing why he is being denied.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 7thgear View Post
did your friend try to get money back for the modifications that he made after he totaled the car?




the general rule here is a don't ask don't tell


if you wreck your car, assume that you're paying out of pocket for the replacement of any aftermarket parts, especially when it comes to suspension and shit.


Aside from facility, you really do not have any options in the current insurance environment, and everything you do, including autocross and track, is at your own risk. If you wreck a car at the track, consider it a full write off, cuz if you try to go through insurance, you might win the battle, but you will most likely be black listed and never again have access to reasonable insurance rates and deal with facility for the next decade.
Definitely true. I'm not looking to have the value of my modifications covered, just that if something serious happened, I could get the car fixed. From what I'm reading here, this mostly depends on your adjuster.
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Old 06-10-2016, 06:38 PM   #11
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I'm with coseco insurance, and every 6 months when I call to make changes (car going in and out of storage) they ask me if any of my cars are modified. Due to the paranoia.. my cars are more or less stock now.. BUT.. my last call with the ins co, I asked about making modifications. I specifically said suspension and wheel upgrades and the agent asked what the value would be.. i said 3-5k... She put me on hold... came back said so this is for performance reasons.. I said yes.. She put a note on my policy and just said to give them a call once I have made the modifications..

So basically for now I am going to assume I have the green light .. so mebbe next year coil overs
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Old 06-10-2016, 07:12 PM   #12
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If you don't want to get deny for insurance, don't mod your car, if you're ready to lawyer up and fight for claims, mod your car.

It's that simple, don't argue with opinions.
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Old 06-10-2016, 09:42 PM   #13
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If you don't want to get deny for insurance, don't mod your car, if you're ready to lawyer up and fight for claims, mod your car.

It's that simple, don't argue with opinions.
Does your insurance know about your "stock" car you naughty boy?
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Old 06-16-2016, 02:00 PM   #14
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I'm with coseco insurance, and every 6 months when I call to make changes (car going in and out of storage) they ask me if any of my cars are modified. Due to the paranoia.. my cars are more or less stock now.. BUT.. my last call with the ins co, I asked about making modifications. I specifically said suspension and wheel upgrades and the agent asked what the value would be.. i said 3-5k... She put me on hold... came back said so this is for performance reasons.. I said yes.. She put a note on my policy and just said to give them a call once I have made the modifications..

So basically for now I am going to assume I have the green light .. so mebbe next year coil overs
Well......... not to be the pessimist, the note might be that if you file a claim, they will look closer at your car for mods, not that you have the green light. I'd be a bit careful...
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