Many motorcycle owners in Vermont trick out their bike with accessories, aftermarket parts and custom work. They may install parts themselves, or they might hire someone to do work that makes their bike truly unique. If you’ve had aftermarket parts put on your bike or custom work done to it, you’ll want to make sure these modifications are covered by your motorcycle insurance policy.
Are Custom Work and Aftermarket Parts Covered by My Motorcycle Insurance?
Many Motorcycle Insurance Policies Don’t Include Standard Coverage for Modifications
Generally speaking, motorcycle insurance policies don’t come with coverage for aftermarket parts or custom work. The standard coverages included in policies are normally intended to cover standard equipment that’s installed by manufacturers. For instance, a policy will likely include coverage for stock handlebars but not sissy bars, and it’ll probably cover a stock exhaust but not a custom one.
Precisely what is considered to be aftermarket or custom work is usually clearly defined in a policy’s paperwork. In most cases, though, the definition is clear. Anything that’s put on a bike that alters the bike’s appearance or performance, whether it be a paint job, a custom alarm or something else, is typically not included within standard coverages’ protections.
Policies That Do Include Standard Coverage for Modifications Often Provide Limited Protection
A few motorcycle policies may be exceptions and include coverage for aftermarket parts and custom work among standard coverages. Even these policies, however, often don’t provide sufficient protection for modifications. In many cases, they only afford a limited amount of protection, and that limited amount is sometimes less than what just one modification costs.
For instance, a policy might only offer $1,000 worth of coverage for aftermarket and custom work. That’s barely enough for a simple paint job, let alone other modifications.
Without Coverage, Bike Owners Are Exposed to Risks
Without insurance coverage for aftermarket and custom work, bike owners that have made modifications to their motorcycle can be dangerously exposed to potential risks.
To start with, bikers would likely not have coverage for modifications if their bike was damaged in an accident or stolen. They may receive compensation for the cost of the bike, but they’d probably have to pay for the modifications out of pocket.
Additionally and potentially more seriously, biker owners might also be lacking adequate motorcycle liability insurance coverage. If a biker causes an accident and an aftermarket part or custom work is found to have contributed to the accident, a policy’s motorcycle liability insurance coverage might only partially apply. In some cases, motorcycle liability insurance coverage may even be voided by a modification that rendered the motorcycle unsafe.
Optional Coverage for Aftermarket Parts and Custom Work is Available
Although most insurance companies in Vermont don’t include much protection for aftermarket parts and custom work among their policies standard coverages, almost all insurers offer optional coverage for modifications. As long as a modification doesn’t affect a bike’s safety, insurers will usually cover the modification through an add-on coverage.
Purchasing optional coverage for modifications usually increases motorcycle policies’ premiums. The increase in premiums, however, is normally small -- especially when compared to the potential cost of replacing all aftermarket parts and redoing all custom work.
Get Affordable Coverage for Modifications by Talking with a Vermont Insurance Agent
To find affordable motorcycle insurance that includes coverage for modifications you’ve made or had done to your bike, contact an independent insurance agent who’s licensed in Vermont. After discussing the modifications your bike has, an independent agent will be able to find out how much different insurance companies will charge to cover those modifications. With an agent's assistance, you should be able to find an insurer that will cover your bike’s customizations at an affordable rate.