Does Gap Insurance Cover Transmission Failure?

When it comes to protecting your investment in a new or used car, gap insurance can be a valuable addition to your auto insurance policy. However, many car owners are uncertain about what gap insurance covers. In this article, we’ll explore the question: Does gap insurance cover transmission failure? We’ll break down the details and help you understand the scope of gap insurance in relation to vehicle breakdowns.

Understanding Gap Insurance

What Is Gap Insurance?

Gap insurance, or Guaranteed Asset Protection insurance, is an optional coverage that is often offered when you purchase or lease a new car. It is designed to bridge the “gap” between the amount you owe on your auto loan or lease and the actual cash value of your vehicle in case of a total loss, such as theft or an accident.

Gap Insurance and Auto Loans

Gap insurance is particularly relevant for individuals with auto loans, as it helps protect them from financial loss if their vehicle is declared a total loss before the loan is fully paid off.

Gap Insurance Coverage

What Does Gap Insurance Cover?

Gap insurance primarily covers the difference, or gap, between:

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Your Auto Loan Balance

The outstanding balance on your auto loan or lease at the time of the loss.

The Actual Cash Value (ACV) of Your Vehicle

The ACV is determined by factors such as the age, make, model, and condition of your car.

What Gap Insurance Typically Does Not Cover

It’s important to note that gap insurance generally does not cover:

Mechanical Failures

This includes issues like transmission failure, engine problems, or other mechanical breakdowns.

Regular Maintenance

Routine maintenance costs, such as oil changes, tire replacements, and brake repairs, are not covered by gap insurance.

Transmission Failure and Gap Insurance

The Gap Insurance Perspective

From the perspective of gap insurance, transmission failure is typically considered a mechanical breakdown, which falls outside the coverage scope.

Other Insurance Options for Mechanical Failures

To protect against mechanical failures like transmission issues, car owners often turn to extended warranty plans or mechanical breakdown insurance. These policies specifically address the cost of repairs for mechanical breakdowns and can be a valuable addition to your coverage.


In conclusion, gap insurance is a valuable addition to your auto insurance policy, but it does not cover mechanical failures such as transmission issues. To safeguard yourself against unexpected repair costs, especially for mechanical breakdowns, it’s advisable to consider other insurance options like extended warranties or mechanical breakdown insurance. Always review the terms and conditions of your insurance policies to fully understand what is and isn’t covered.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Is gap insurance required by law?
    Gap insurance is not required by law, but it is often recommended for individuals with auto loans or leases to protect against financial loss in the event of a total loss.
  2. Can I purchase gap insurance separately from my auto insurance policy?
    Yes, you can often purchase gap insurance as a standalone policy from insurance providers or through your dealership.
  3. What is the cost of gap insurance?
    The cost of gap insurance varies but is typically affordable, with premiums often ranging from $20 to $40 annually when added to your auto insurance policy.
  4. Is gap insurance transferable to a new vehicle?
    Gap insurance can sometimes be transferred to a new vehicle if the terms and conditions of your policy allow it. Check with your insurer for details.
  5. Do I need gap insurance if I have a significant down payment on my car?
    While a larger down payment reduces the gap between your loan balance and your car’s value, gap insurance can still be beneficial for added financial protection in case of a total loss.
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