Rhode Island Windshield Insurance: What are the Full Glass coverage laws in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island doesn't require drivers to purchase glass coverage, but some RI auto insurance providers offer zero-deductible policy add-ons for such damage. Find Rhode Island windshield replacement auto insurance options.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that ex...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent

UPDATED: Jul 15, 2021

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Things to remember...

  • Rhode Island car insurance laws don’t specify what type of part must be used to replace a windshield
  • Driving with a damaged windshield is often illegal as it can lead to severe visibility impairment
  • Comprehensive coverage is an insurance option that enables people to get protected from non-accident damages
  • In Rhode Island, there is no specific law which requires insurance companies to provide a zero-deductible glass coverage, what repairs should be used
  • The parts that are used to replace broken glass are often limited to the same original manufacturer or at least the same quality parts, as is the case in Rhode Island

It is not an uncommon issue that people experience when it comes to small pieces of rocks damaging vehicles on highways. Since driving over any of these scraps can launch them into the air, they often hit the car behind.

Sadly, when a hard piece goes 60 miles per hour in one direction, and a vehicle goes 60 miles per hour in the opposite direction, the force of impact is large enough to be potent.

Vision impairment from windshield damage varies, but driving with even a minor crack is risky. Cracks can spread rapidly and even a small collision could result in the entire windshield breaking, leading to major injury and extensive damages.

Size of the scrap, speed, position of impact, and more all come into play when it comes to glass. For example, a vehicle that gets hit with a rock chip in the middle of its windshield is more likely to be broken than if the chip hits the very side of the glass.

If exposed to this issue, one’s first steps would be to reach out to the insurance company. This way, a repair location can be negotiated, the deductible will be decided, and so on.

Drivers in Rhode Island will somewhat limited in the parts that can be used to repair the glass with, there are no laws depicting how insurance companies must cover the entire deductible, and there are no laws governing what who picks the repair shops.

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Glass Coverage Law in Rhode Island

The lack of explicit laws for this state makes the entire glass coverage issue a gray area. The only clarity one might obtain is in the area of aftermarket parts that are allowed, under special circumstances.

Paying for car repairs is expensive even with good insurance. You might be able to make your monthly premium, but that doesn’t mean you have hundreds to fork over in the event of a cracked windshield and auto insurance claim.

Rhode Island car insurance providers can offer “zero-deductible glass coverage,” which means that in the event of a damaged windshield or windows, you can have them repaired or replaced without having to pay anything out of pocket.

You can get full glass coverage as part of a comprehensive auto insurance policy. Many drivers who are desperate to save on insurance skip comprehensive coverage, but it’s really a necessity more than a luxury; comprehensive coverage pays for any damages to your car that aren’t related to a collision.

This includes fire, vandalism, natural disasters, falling objects, and more.

Although having comprehensive coverage can raise your premiums, the security and insurance you receive as a result make it worthwhile.

If you can’t afford to upgrade your coverage with your existing carrier, then consider comparing free car insurance quotes online to get the best deal. You might be amazed at how much cheaper other companies are.

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Replacement Parts Laws in Rhode Island

In Rhode Island, aftermarket parts that are at least equal in kind and quality may be used. The exception to this rule is cars that are less than 30-months-old, in which case the consumers must be notified in writing so that their consent can be obtained.

They also must be notified about their entitlement to the original parts.

No one wants to pay more than they have to, so you should always review your insurance policy before you contact any mechanics or vendors.

This way, all the estimates that particular vendors provide will be cross-referenced with what the insurance company permits under their deductible policy.

Of course, if the insurance company will provide no help with the payment, which is often the case for those drivers who do not have comprehensive coverage, they might as well avoid contacting their providers because they might be exposed to higher premiums because of that claim.

Repair Vendor Laws in Rhode Island

There are no specific laws about repair shops that must be used when there is glass damage. Due to this, a lot of freedom is given to insurance companies to specify if they want the drivers to go through some specific vendors that the company might have an established agreement with.

There is no complicated answer as to why large corporations would partner up with minor businesses that repair vehicles, other than the fact that they want to save money.

Small businesses often grant hefty discounts for repairs when an auto insurer refers all of its policyholders to them. In case one finds a repair shop on their own, they might be subjected to paying a portion of the cost out-of-pocket.

Since the insurance company might have had a cheaper resolution, they tend to be unwilling to repay more than that exact cost that their partner shop would have charged.

Thus, it is crucial to contact the company if one sees that they do offer zero or partial deductible benefits.

Ultimately, good communication from the consumer to the insuring company will go a long way. Obtaining a quality policy is crucial, and comprehensive coverage will always come in handy.

Rhode Island drivers can keep themselves and their bank accounts secure on the road by comparing insurance quotes, shopping around, and opting for the best coverage possible. Compare rates today with our free quote tool now! 


  1. https://crackedwindshieldlaws.com/rhode-island/
  2. https://business.gasbuddy.com/blog-synchrony-car-care/
  3. https://www.edmunds.com/car-care/aftermarket-versus-manufacturer-car-parts.html
  4. https://webserver.rilin.state.ri.us/Statutes/TITLE27/27-10.2/27-10.2-3.HTM
  5. https://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/how-to/a77/easy-windshield-repair/
  6. https://www.ri.gov/press/view/26910

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