Cars and Trucks

Car Insurance Anti-Theft Device: Everything You Need to Know

A car insurance anti-theft device can protect your vehicle and lower premiums. Auto anti-theft devices are tools installed by a vehicle’s manufacturer or a driver to safeguard the car against theft. Many insurance companies grant discounts to policyholders whose vehicles contain anti-theft devices because it helps insurers save money on coverage costs.

Does Car Insurance Cover Theft?

Vehicle insurance does not include coverage for the theft of personal items inside your stolen vehicle. That said, you can check with your homeowner or rental insurer to see if they protect you against property loss. It’s best to avoid requesting coverage from your homeowner insurance company if your deductible is higher than the value of your stolen property, says Insurance Hotline.

The only type of coverage in your auto insurance that covers a stolen vehicle is comprehensive coverage. Usually, comprehensive coverage is optional for personal vehicle owners. If you don’t pay for comprehensive coverage, your insurer won’t cover your vehicle replacement bills when someone steals your car.

What Are the Best Car Anti-Theft Devices?

The following are some of the best car anti-theft devices on the market:

GPS Trackers

GPS trackers help you track your car’s location from your smartphone. These trackers will send text messages or email alerts to you whenever your vehicle is in motion. Some trackers also deliver reports on your car’s location and destination through text messages. If you use an advanced GPS tracker, you may be able to immobilize your vehicle when someone is trying to steal it. Usually, GPS trackers cost between $40 to over $100. You may also need to pay a monthly fee to keep your GPS active.

Vehicle Recovery Systems

Vehicle recovery systems use radio frequency technology to help law enforcement officers locate and recover your vehicle. When you report a car theft to the police, they send radio signals to the stolen vehicle through special computers. These radio signals will activate the vehicle recovery system in your car and deliver the location back to police computers, thus facilitating the car’s recovery.

According to Insurify, you can get a basic vehicle recovery system for $695. An upgrade that will alert you when someone moves your car without a KeyPass may cost an additional $995.

Hidden Kill Switch

A hidden kill switch cuts electricity flow at the ignition switch of a car to prevent thieves from stealing the vehicle. Some install many hidden kill switches to discourage robbers who try to drive off with their car. The average hidden kill switch costs $10. However, you may need an auto technician to install the switches.

Brake Lock

A brake lock is a device attached to your vehicle’s brake pedal or steering wheel, which immobilizes your brake. Robbers won’t be able to move your car if your brake doesn’t work. On average, brake locks cost $50.

Car Wheel Clamp

CarInsurance.com indicates that the function of a wheel clamp is to lock your vehicle’s tires. This will keep thieves from stealing your car tires. Since a clamped tire cannot turn, using a wheel clamp may also safeguard your car against theft. Most car wheel clamps cost between $30 and $70.

Steering Wheel Lock

Steering wheel locks are one of the best auto anti-theft devices on the market. This tool locks your steering wheel, making it difficult for robbers to drive the car. The cheapest steering wheel lock costs about $20.

Subscription Services

If you subscribe to security services like OnStar, they will prevent your vehicle’s engine from starting when you report a theft. These subscription services require their users to pay a monthly fee of $25 or higher.

Audible Alarm

Audible alarm systems vibrate loudly when thieves touch your vehicle. Since a blaring alarm attracts attention, a thief is more likely to leave your car when you have an audible alarm system.

Alternatively, you can post stickers advertising the alarm system’s brand on your car. This tactic might be effective in deterring crooks from trying to steal your vehicle.

According to CarInsurance.com, you can purchase an audible alarm system for as low as $200 if you select a basic installation type. Complex alarm system installations may be more expensive.

Remote Lock

Using remote locks on your car is a great way to safeguard your vehicle against theft. Most remote locks allow vehicle owners to connect the remote to their smartphones. If you don’t remember to lock your car, you won’t have to go back to the parking lot. You can just lock your vehicle from your smartphone.

Since remote locks are highly secure, car thieves will be unable to unlock the car. While some cars come with remote locks, you can also purchase a remote lock for your vehicle. Basic remote locks often go for about $200.

Smart Keys

Smart keys lock a car by using a radio pulse generator to communicate with antennas inside the vehicle. Because these keys send a different signal to the vehicle’s antenna every time, even tech-savvy robbers may be unable to crack the lock mechanism. Chances are, your new car might have an original smart key. If it doesn’t, ask an auto technician to install an intelligent key for your vehicle.

How to Get an Anti-theft Device Discount on Your Insurance

Ask your insurance company representative for details on how to get an anti-theft discount on your vehicle insurance. The amount of anti-theft vehicle insurance discounts varies across several insurance companies. So, it’s best to know the discount from different insurers, compare their insurance costs, and pick the most affordable policy.

Sometimes, insurers restrict anti-theft discounts to drivers who use certain types of anti-theft devices or residents of a particular state. Others may request you to show proof that you use an anti-theft system in your car before giving you the discount.

What Auto Insurance Companies Offer Anti-Theft Discounts?

The following U.S. insurers provide anti-theft discounts to their policyholders:

  • GEICO
  • Nationwide
  • USAA
  • State Farm
  • Allstate
  • Liberty Mutual

    Check this out if you need additional information, resources, or guidance on car insurance.

    Sources:

    Approved Anti-Theft Devices Protect Your Car and Lower Your Rate | insurancehotline.com

    Best Anti-Theft Devices for Cars | carinsurance.com

    Best Car Anti-Theft Devices: Consumer Reviews, Discounts (2021) | insurify.com

    Does Insurance Cover a Stolen Car? | caranddriver.com

    Auto Insurance Tips: Everything You Need to Know | caranddriver.com

    Car Insurance | caranddriver.com

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