Car Stereo Insurance
Everyday people are having their vehicles and car stereos stolen. I'm not going to baffle you with the statistics. Just know that it could happen to you and that if you have a custom stereo system your odds are even greater for being a target. You need to protect yourself. Besides a good security system (which will be covered in another chapter) you need insurance.
There are several terms you need to know about insurance. Some of these you may be familiar with but others you may not be.
When shopping for insurance there are several questions you will want to ask your agent. The first question should be "what do I need to do to cover my stereo?". Most comprehensive policies will only cover stereo equipment that is installed in factory locations (drop-in speakers, head units, etc.) and only up to the cost of a replacement factory unit. If you have an amp rack and subwoofer enclosure they may not be covered by a comprehensive policy. This is where a rider would be needed. Your insurance company may have limits on the amount of the rider. If you have a $6,000 stereo and the limit on your rider is $4,000 then you're not fully covered. You may need to switch insurance companies or seek out a company that will insure just the stereo system. Another important question is replacement value and depreciation. If you paid $400 for a head unit two years ago and it is stolen, how much will you be reimbursed? Your insurance company may depreciate the cost of your head unit so that you would only receive $220 as an example. Make sure you know the policy before you sign the papers. Read the fine print and don't be afraid to ask questions. Here's a list of other important questions you'll want to ask:
Make sure you document all costs associated with your stereo. Make a folder specifically for the stereo and keep all receipts. Get a letter from the installing shop, on their letterhead, detailing the cost of the system. You will also want to take before and after photos of the installation. A video camera would come in handy for giving a guided tour of the system. Be sure to explain what each piece of equipment is so it can be matched up to your records. Keep the video in a safe place and don't forget to remove the record tab.
Here's some miscellaneous safety tips that will help to keep your ride safe.
Another little known fact is that some car alarm manufacturers will cover your deductible (with limits) if you have and use their brand of car alarm. The details vary greatly so contact the manufacturer and your local shop for details.
Car Audio Planning and Buying
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