If you ride a motorcycle during the spring, summer, and fall, you’ll need proper motorcycle insurance coverage. You should be able to enjoy the open road without worrying about paying for property damage or personal injury. But what about during the winter when you leave your bike in long-term storage?
Many motorcycle owners don’t consider winter motorcycle insurance. However, it’s a good idea to survey insurance options even when you’re not riding. You have several ways to save money and stay protected during those long winter months.
Getting a Laid-up Motorcycle Insurance Policy
Some U.S. regions have lengthy, harsh winters that make it impossible to ride for a solid four to five months. Other areas have mild winter seasons, and bikers can still ride on a clear day. That said, you should evaluate where you live and the overall climate before finalizing decisions about motorcycle insurance.
If you want to save money during the winter and maintain some insurance coverage, consider getting a laid-up motorcycle insurance policy. Laid-up policies (also known as lay-up or motorcycle storage policies) offer several key benefits, including:
- Pausing liability and collision coverage—what you’d normally need in case of a vehicle accident
- Maintaining theft, fire, and other coverage options to protect your motorcycle while in storage
Some insurance companies provide adjustable laid-up policies that cater to your unique situation. For example, you might live in a region with mild winters and still ride occasionally between December and March. If so, ask your insurer about liability and collision coverage options within the laid-up insurance policy.
For most bikers, a laid-up insurance policy is the perfect solution to winter motorcycle insurance. You can keep your motorcycle safe from break-ins and fire damage but not deal with unnecessary expenses while it sits in storage. This helps you reduce insurance costs without compromising protection while you wait for riding season.
Lowering Rates by Increasing Deductibles
Are you looking to lower monthly insurance premiums and save during the winter? Raising insurance coverage deductibles is an excellent option for many motorcycle riders. Higher deductibles often lead to lower premium rates, helping you avoid needlessly pricey expenses while your bike remains idle.
Increasing deductibles is an easy way to lower motorcycle insurance rates and make them more affordable. However, the amount you save on insurance will vary from carrier to carrier. You’ll want to discuss raising deductibles with your insurance company to discover your options and learn how much you could save.
Canceling Insurance During the Winter
If you don’t want to put up with winter motorcycle insurance and high premiums, you have another option: cancel your policy. It’s as simple and radical as it sounds.
However, we recommend against canceling your insurance policy for several significant reasons:
- Vandalism, theft, and personal injury risks
- Damage due to environmental factors
- Insurance policy premium resets
Vandalism, Theft, and Personal Injury Risks
Let’s say you winterize your motorcycle in a popup shelter, throw on a fitted cover, and go to bed. The following day, you wake up to find your two-wheeled iron stallion with sizable dents, chipped paint, and missing parts. Someone broke in and vandalized it.
If you’ve canceled your insurance coverage, you’ll get no compensation for the damage and loss. Any repairs or replacement expenses will come out of pocket. You’ll face a similar crisis if your bike falls over and injures someone after you cancel liability coverage.
Damage Due to Environmental Factors
Just because your motorcycle is in long-term storage doesn’t mean it’s completely safe and secure. Winter weather can take a toll on any vehicle, even when not used. Snowstorms, rain, ice, and road salt can damage your bike and leave you with major expenses if uninsured.
Depending on where you live, fallen trees and debris could be a significant concern. A giant oak tree near your motorcycle storage area could fall over after an ice storm and smash your motorcycle. If you cancel your insurance policy, help would not be a phone call away.
Insurance Policy Premium Resets
Canceling your insurance coverage could create financial issues even if your motorcycle stays safe. You probably wouldn’t save money like you thought since you’d have to pay for a new policy instead of a renewal. You’d also end your collision-free riding streak and reset diminishing deductibles when you get a new insurance plan.
Don’t just cancel your policy if you’re reviewing winter motorcycle insurance options. You’ll likely have to pay more once springtime rolls around and you need motorcycle insurance. Instead, look into a laid-up insurance policy or increase your current policy’s deductibles to lower premiums.
Law Tigers – America’s Motorcycle Attorneys – Here For Bikers When You Need Us!
We hope you found this motorcycle winterization guide helpful. We had a lot of fun putting it together for you.
At Law Tigers, we’re motorcycle attorneys who ride and we represent bikers across the United States. We love helping riders keep their rides safe and secure all year round.
Enjoy the riding season and stay protected afterward with the right insurance coverage! And if you need help with an accident case, call us at 800-863-7216.Back to Top