Auto Repair Shop Insurance

An auto repair service is a good business to be in today. As cars get smarter, it becomes harder and harder for the shade tree mechanic to make repairs and even perform routine maintenance. Many of today's sophisticated cars have microprocessors and computerized circuits and this requires a trained technician. Auto repair shop insurance is very important because one simple problem can result in thousands of dollars worth of damages, and this is just one of many different risk factors automotive professionals face today. Here is an example which demonstrates why you need the best possible insurance.

Sam was an automotive enthusiast and he loved cars and everything about them. Ever since he was very small, Sam wanted to know what made cars run and he took vocational training in high school and went on to be a certified automotive technician. After 8 years, Sam got the chance to run his own garage and he went into debt to buy the place, but it didn't take long to prosper. When Sam bought the shop he talked to his insurance agent about garage keepers insurance, because he knew very little about the subject. His agent went over all the risk factors and provided him with a comprehensive policy. This turned out to be a great investment.

Two years later, one of Sam's mechanics made a simple mistake with a customer's car. During an oil change, he over tightened the oil pan drain plug. A day later, the oil pan began to leak while the car owner was driving from Vancouver to Seattle. During this time, the motor locked up and had to be replaced. Fortunately, Sam's auto shop insurance included professional liability and it covered the claim (which was in excess of $10,000).


Auto shop coverage includes risks that local businesses face, plus it also covers risks specific to the automotive repair shop. When you suffer a loss, you can go to your insurance company and they will pay the claim, provided it is covered in your policy.


If your business makes repairs to cars or performs maintenance of any kind, you may need this kind of specialized coverage. Here are businesses this includes:

  • Oil change shops
  • Mechanic shops
  • Brake services
  • Transmission shops
  • Muffler shops
  • Automotive tow services
  • Auto glass businesses
  • Auto upholstery businesses
  • Car detailing services
  • Speed and customizing shops
  • Auto body repair shops
  • Car dealers


  • Commercial property insurance - covers all kinds of hazards like storm damage, fire, theft and vandalism.
  • General liability
  • Commercial vehicle insurance - if you have business vehicles they need special insurance.
  • Broad form property damage - what would you do if a tornado swept through the area one day and all your customer's vehicles were destroyed. This insurance covers customers' property while they are on your premises.
  • Garage equipment
  • Garage contents
  • Worker compensation
  • On hook liability for cars you tow to the shop


  • Additions to commercial property insurance - this can include replacement cost coverage, flood insurance, and earthquake insurance.
  • Separate buildings - can cover detached garages and machine shops.
  • Errors and omissions - although it is optional, it is pretty much a necessity for auto repair services, as it only takes one small error to cause an expensive claim. This may also include claims that one of your mechanics gave bad automotive advice which ended in damages.
  • Business interruption coverage - pays you for downtime while the shop is unusable.
  • Increased liability insurance


Just because your garage is insured, doesn't mean all your business risks are covered. Not every insurance agent is familiar with the needs of auto repair shops. However, when you come to Columbia Insurance Group you have someone with a great deal of experience and knowledge insuring automotive repair businesses and dealerships.

If your business doesn't have customized coverage you could be leaving yourself open to a financial disaster and you may have no idea that your auto shop insurance policy has gaps in it. Don't take chances with your business.