What is alloy wheel and tyre insurance, is it worth it?

When you buy your new car you might be offered alloy wheel and tyre insurance for your new car – perhaps as part of the deal or as an extra that you’ll have to pay for.

What is alloy wheel insurance?

Most modern cars, especially more expensive ones, tend to have thin ‘low-profile’ tyres that make it very easy to scuff your alloy wheels on kerbs, especially when parking. Although this damage is only usually cosmetic, it does tend to make your shiny new car look somewhat more second-hand.

The cost of refurbishing an alloy wheel is usually far less than the excess on a normal car insurance policy, so there’s often no point claiming on it. Alloy wheel insurance, however, is designed specifically to help you keep your alloy wheels looking like new – often the excess for alloy wheel insurance is either free, or about £10.

Alloy wheel insurance often has a maximum payout – you’ll find this is usually about £150 per wheel. It’ll normally only cover the original wheels fitted to your car, and it’s worth checking your policy documents to see how many times per year you can claim, because if you’ve kerbed more than one wheel then each will usually be treated as an individual case.

Is alloy insurance worth it?

If your car is on a lease or PCP finance deal then you may be charged for alloy wheel damage at the end of the term, so alloy insurance is a way of mitigating this risk. However, if you kerb one wheel in your term then it’s unlikely to be worth paying for alloy wheel insurance, whereas if you tend to scuff wheels like it’s going out of fashion then it could be worth it.

Tyres are vital for keeping you safe – so it can be worth insuring them

What is tyre insurance?

Tyre insurance covers you against punctures – not something that used to be worth insuring, but given how expensive modern tyres can be (especially on SUVs with wide tyres) it may be worth considering.

Tyre insurance usually covers accidental damage such as punctures, or more nefarious damage from people letting your tyres down or slashing them. Your tyre insurance premium will depend on the amount your tyres are worth – you can usually insure yourself for £125, £300 or £450 per tyre.

You’ll be limited to a certain number or cost of claims per year, as with alloy wheel insurance.

Is tyre insurance worth it?

If you have a big SUV such as an Audi Q7 then it may well be worth insuring your tyres. Not only will help you get back on the road after a puncture, but it’ll let you put good, grippy, premium tyres on your car – always a better choice than going for an unknown budget brand. After all, your tyres are the only thing keeping your car on the road, so it’s worth protecting that investment.

If you have a smaller car where the replacement tyre cost is lower then chances are it’s less worth paying for tyre insurance – but you may still want the peace of mind.

If you’re interested in these products, ask your dealer for a quote – you can also buy it separately from any number of third parties.

Read our guides to other extras dealers may offer you, including scratch and dent insurance, paint protection and interior upholstery protection.