Blog Calendar What Insurance You Need for Heavy Equipment Businesses

What Insurance You Need for Heavy Equipment Businesses

April 27, 2023 / 5 mins read

Your customers rely on you to repair their heavy equipment or to rent it from you. Your service technicians and mechanics repair and maintain anything from bulldozers and forklifts to dump trucks.

You also have customers who rely on you for heavy equipment rentals without any mishaps.

You need a customized heavy equipment insurance package to protect your business, employees, and equipment.

What kind of heavy equipment insurance package do I need?

You’ll need a heavy equipment insurance package to protect you and your business in the event of accidents, lawsuits, property damage, or employee injuries.

Without the right package of insurance for heavy equipment rental and repair business owners, you’d need to pay out of your own pocket for any problems that arise.

Go over the types of coverages you need in detail with your Western business insurance expert to make sure your heavy equipment repair and rental business is covered for the risks that you face.

A heavy equipment insurance package can help protect you from these 3 common claims:

1. Your mechanic test drives a dump truck after a repair and gets into an accident that causes damage. Your customer sues you for damages to the dump trump.

2. A customer slips and falls at your operations on a wet floor, breaks his ankle and sues you.

3. A customer alleges that your repair work did not fix his forklift’s and sues you for failure to deliver services as promised.

Here are the coverages that you will need for your heavy equipment repair and rental business:

Equipment and Tools Insurance: This type of coverage replaces, or repairs damaged, stolen, or lost equipment and tools, accessories, or other property that you use in your heavy equipment repair and rental business.

Anything valued at less than $1,500 is considered a tool and anything above that limit is considered equipment.

It can also be called equipment floater insurance.

Garage Keepers Insurance: This coverage protects your heavy equipment business in case a customer’s property is damaged while in your possession.

It protects your business while your customers’ heavy equipment is kept at your garage for maintenance or services, or storage and parking in the event of fire, theft, vandalism, explosion, or lightning. It reimburses customers should your heavy equipment garage be legally liable for damage to their vehicles.

Inland Marine Insurance: It’s property insurance for equipment in transit over land. For example, it generally covers heavy machinery equipment that has been rented and is being shipped to a job site.

Leased, Rented, Borrowed Equipment Insurance: If your heavy equipment business leases, rents, or borrows equipment, this type of coverage provides financial support for loss or damage to that equipment you use in your garage.

Commercial Property Insurance: This type of insurance can help keep you protected from property losses, such as theft or vandalism. You can also add earthquake insurance, sewer backup or flood coverage extensions.

Commercial property insurance protects your repair garage and its contents.

Property you may need to insure:

  • Buildings and other structures
  • Furniture, equipment, supplies
  • Inventory and computers
  • Documents such as payroll, accounts receivable

Equipment Breakdown Insurance: Your heavy equipment business uses expensive equipment. Equipment breakdown insurance provides coverage for property damage from the sudden and accidental breakdown of insured equipment not automatically covered by a standard commercial property policy.

Go over the specifics of equipment breakdown coverage with your Western business insurance expert.

Commercial General Liability Insurance (CGL): This type of insurance protects your business against common claims like third-party property damage (damage to a customer’s heavy equipment) or bodily injuries if a customer visiting your auto garage slips, falls, and is injured. CGL may cover a customer’s medical expenses and your legal fees regardless of the outcome of a lawsuit you face.

Without this type of insurance, you would be paying for these expenses out of your own pocket.

Ask your Western business insurance expert to go over the differences in Garage Keepers and Commercial General Liability Insurance to help you understand how they can protect your heavy equipment business.

Pollution Liability Insurance: It covers clean-up costs, third-party bodily injuries (such as a respiratory illness), or damage to a customer’s heavy equipment caused by pollution or toxic substances you use to do your work.

Cyber Liability Insurance: If your businesses is digitized then you have your customers’ names, addresses and credit card information. If your computer system is hacked, cybercriminals can steal this information and sell it.

Without cyber insurance, you will have to pay out of your pocket for the cost of restoring your system. You may also be liable for damages to third parties whose information has been stolen and you may have to pay for notification expenses to inform customers affected by a breach.

Business Interruption Insurance: If there is an insured loss at your heavy equipment repair and rental business that’s severe enough to prevent it from being open, the expenses associated with getting your business running again will be covered.

This type of policy usually covers vandalism, fire, wind, flooding, and other risks (make sure to understand what your policy covers). Your policy will help compensate you for lost income and expenses that you will need to continue paying even while you are unable to work.

Commercial Vehicle Insurance: If you have a vehicle that you use as part of your heavy equipment business, then you need to be covered by commercial auto insurance. Your personal car insurance usually won’t cover your business.

How much heavy equipment insurance do I need?

It will depend on the size of your business and the kind work that you do.

That means it’s unlikely that all heavy equipment repair and rental businesses would pay the same rates monthly or annually.

Ask your Western business insurance expert to determine the right level of coverage for your heavy equipment business.

What do I do if my heavy equipment business has an insurance claim?

  • Contact your broker immediately after any business-related mishap. Waiting to file a claim can confuse insurers about the severity of the damages to your business.
  • Know your policy so that when you contact your broker you are familiar with what will be covered or not.
  • Document the damage. Take photos right away and write down what happened.
  • Do not throw away damaged goods after taking photos. Keep the physical evidence so that your adjustor can see it.
  • Do not invite lawsuits. Don’t say anything that could be used against you, especially if you aren’t sure what happened.
  • Be honest about what your damaged property is worth. Damaged commercial property is generally valued according to its actual cash value or replacement value.

Western Insurance has licensed BUSINESS INSURANCE EXPERTS to get your heavy equipment repair and rental business the right insurance package. Our experts are available now to help you navigate the business insurance journey to protect your business.

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