Explore Car Insurance

What is windscreen and window glass cover?

Reduced windscreen and window glass excess cover is typically an optional extra commonly available on comprehensive car insurance policies, although it can sometimes be a standard inclusion of comprehensive cover. Reduced windscreen and window glass excess cover lowers or completely waives the excess if you need to make a claim for damage to your car windows or windscreens.

How does windscreen cover work?

If something damages your car windscreen or window glass, repair costs are covered by car insurance, as long as the event is listed in the policy (e.g. storm or accidental damage). Usually, you have to pay an excess when making an insurance claim– but not always with windscreen excess cover.

Depending on your insurer and the type of policy you hold, windscreen cover can reduce or completely eliminate the excess payment you would face if you made a claim for this damage through your policy.

Some providers may still charge an excess, but a lower amount than it would be without this cover; this is sometimes called windscreen excess reduction. Other insurance providers offer excess-free windscreen replacement but may only do this once a year or limit it to just the front or back windscreen; this is generally known as excess-free windscreen replacement.

Bullseye cracked windscreen

Why get car insurance with windscreen cover?

There are a couple of reasons why you should consider getting windscreen cover if you aren’t already covered:

  1. It can be illegal to drive with a damaged windscreen in Australia (depending on the size of the damage and the laws in your state or territory).
  2. Small repairs to chips and cracks don’t cost much to repair, but if left alone they can become a much more expensive problem to fix.
  3. Replacing modern car windscreens that have sensors can be quite expensive, so removing or reducing the excess for those claims can be a big help.

Adding windscreen cover to your car insurance can help take the financial stress out of  repairing a damaged windscreen or car window.

What to do if your windscreen is chipped, cracked or damaged

If your car windscreen or windows are damaged, you should contact your provider to lodge a claim. Many insurance providers have their own network of mechanics and repairers they work with, and your insurer will help organise a repairer to fix the issue.

It’s important that you act quickly when your car windscreen or windows are damaged, even if it’s just a small chip. These little chips and cracks can quickly become bigger if not repaired soon after they appear.

What if I don’t have windscreen and window glass cover?

You might have some different options available to you if your windscreen gets chipped and needs repairs.

If multiple areas of your car are damaged by an insured event (e.g. accident or fire), in addition to the windscreen, you can lodge a car insurance claim as normal and pay just the basic excess; excess-free windscreen claims are mostly only available when it’s just the windscreen or windows that are damaged.

If the damage wasn’t caused by an insured event (such as a stone flicked from another car on the road), you have the option to organise and pay for repairs out of pocket instead of lodging an insurance claim. You can still make a claim if you want, but you’ll have to pay the full excess applicable to your policy if you don’t have windscreen excess cover.

Frequently asked questions

Does windscreen/window glass cover other glass in my car?

It’s important to note that window glass and windscreen cover may not cover all glass parts of your vehicle. While specific policies may differ, excess free windscreen replacement generally applies to:

  • Front windscreens
  • Side windows
  • Rear windows
  • Window glass seals.

Those glass components that generally aren’t covered by this kind of insurance (depending on the policy and provider) can include:

  • Sunroofs
  • Headlight and indicator casing
  • Side- and rear-view mirrors
  • Infotainment display screens.

It’s important that you always read the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) before purchasing a policy, so you know exactly what you’re covered for as well as the policy limits, exclusions, terms and conditions.

Can I choose my own repairer with windscreen and window glass cover?

Most insurance providers will use their own network of repairers, technicians and glaziers to repair or replace your car’s windscreen and windows. This means you may have no choice of repairer, or a limited choice from the insurance provider’s network.

However, some providers do let you choose your own repairer, whether as standard for your policy or as an option extra when signing up. Contact your provider to check if you can choose your repairer.

Do other kinds of car insurance cover window cracks and chips?

Most car insurance policies don’t cover damage to your windscreens unless it was caused by an insured event. In other words, while comprehensive car insurance can cover windscreen damage caused by a variety of scenarios, Third Party Property Damage may not at all.

Third Party Fire and Theft will cover a damaged windscreen if it was caused by a fire, theft or attempted theft event, but excess reduction options generally aren’t available to this level of car insurance.

Your broken windscreen could also be fixed by your provider’s roadside assistance team, subject to the terms of your policy. Just keep in mind that you might not be able to make an excess-free windscreen claim for this. Make sure you read the PDS and contact your provider if you have queries.

If I make a claim on windscreen and window glass cover, does that affect my No Claim Discount (NCD)?

Generally speaking, you will lose your NCD if you make any sort of claim, even if you the windscreen excess reduction option. However, some insurance providers may let you keep your NCD after making a claim for damaged windscreens and windows, provided you also have an excess waiver policy.

You can contact your provider to clarify whether this type of claim would remove your NCD or whether you can maintain your NCD after claiming with windscreen excess reduction cover.

How much do windscreen repairs cost?

Windscreens and window glass repairs can range from $50 to $100, while replacing a standard windscreen can cost $200 to $400.* The more popular your car model, the less you’re likely to pay for replacements as there are more parts readily available in the market.

It’s also worth noting many modern windscreens come with sensors and tech that are connected to other systems in the car, such as lane assist, emergency braking and object detection. Known as Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) windscreens, these can cost up to $1,000 or even more to replace! Reducing or removing the need to pay an excess for windscreen replacement means you may have less of an impact to your hip pocket if you need to make a claim.

What warranty is there for windscreen repairs and replacements?

Many insurance providers work with technicians that offer a lifetime guarantee on their workmanship when replacing or repairing your windscreen and car window glass. Contact your provider to check whether any repairs on your vehicle (including windscreen repairs) carried out by their technicians come with a lifetime guarantee.

Is windscreen and window glass cover worth it?

Whether or not windscreen cover is worth it is a question only you can answer. You will need to determine whether you can meet the cost of repairing or replacing your car’s window glass while paying an excess for it, or if it would be a better option to purchase a windscreen reduction option.

Is it illegal to drive with a cracked windscreen?

Cracks, chips and scratches on your windscreen may render your car unroadworthy, and it’s illegal to drive an unroadworthy car. A damaged windscreen can impede your vision and is a structural weakness, so it’s important to take swift action to ensure your car is legal and safe.

Stephen Zeller, General Manager

Tips from our car insurance expert, Stephen Zeller

  1. Windscreen cover may not be automatically included in your policy, but it could be an optional extra. Please read your PDS to understand all the details of a particular policy.
  2. Many insurers offer a discount if you purchase online but this generally disappears after the first 12 months. We recommend comparing car insurance at least once a year as your policy will automatically become more expensive when the discount ends.
  3. Take a look at raising the standard excess payment of your policy to reduce the premium. However, before you make any big changes ask yourself; if you raise it, would you be able to afford paying a higher premium in a claim?
  4. When people move home we often update our home and contents but overlook our car insurance. Where you live and park your car will have an impact on the premium you pay and it’s critical you update your insurer if your details change.

Compare car insurance features for free

You can compare car insurance for free with us. Our comparison service makes it easy to weigh up features (including windscreen excess options), prices, exclusions and more. Why not see what we have to offer and compare car insurance quotes today?

* These numbers are average figures intended as a guide and they may differ to the costs you could face should your car windscreen be damaged.

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