Ever stranded on the side of the highway due to a vehicle breakdown or flat tires? Sadly, this is a familiar incident for drivers. Things can go out of hand when it happens in a remote area, or other drivers don’t want to stop to give a helping hand.
Requesting roadside assistance is always beneficial. Before asking for help, you must know what they cover. Does roadside assistance cover flat tires? Yes, they cover flat tires. Now, you might be wondering, how much does it cost?
Well, continue reading this comprehensive guide to learn more about RSA services.
What is Roadside Assistance?
Roadside assistance, the other name of this add-on, is breakdown coverage. This car insurance add-on offers service to drivers physically, mentally, or economically when vehicles break down on the go.
Whether you require help during a flat tire, a jump start, a blown engine or an empty fuel tank, the skilled technician will come to your location and solve your problem.
In fact, roadside assistance covers minor complications so you can return to the highway.
Generally, most car insurance companies offer this service. They link up with automotive service businesses and offer quick service.
Even if you don’t have a membership, you can get the service by paying the service cost.
Overview of Services Offered under Roadside Assistance
Generally, RSA covers all types of vehicles, from the smallest to the biggest pickups. You have to take the service from an auto insurance provider.
If you are a member of a standard RSA plan, you, your spouse or other family members can ask for aid. However, cross-check with your providers for the coverage and limitations plan.
Maximum RSA plans include:
- Personal cars, trucks, vans, SUVs, pickups
- You, your beloved ones, and family members can ask for RSA according to the policy
On the other hand, most RSA plans exclude the following:
- Mobile homes, RVs
- Commercial vehicles, company vehicles or other cars that are not listed as private
- Some providers consider rented or borrowed cars as private
- Always double-check with your RSA providers to be sure
What is Covered by Roadside Assistance?
Before signing up for a roadside assistance service, remember you will get minor repairs. You will get coverage for the below complications.
- Flat Tire Changing: Finding a professional mechanic can be challenging to change your punctured tire when on a trip. A roadside assistance service provider will send someone to change the spare tire wherever you are. If a spare tire is absent in your car, they will tow your car and take it to the nearest mechanic shop.
- Changing Dead Batteries: Dead car batteries need to be replaced ASAP to avoid problems. Replacing dead batteries becomes convenient with the breakage coverage services.
- Fuel Delivery: Before reaching your next gas station, did you ever run out of gas? You are lucky enough if the answer is NO. I faced such a situation once and was covered by roadside assistance services.
- Towing Services: If you need towing assistance anytime for some breakdowns, roadside assistance will cover you. In addition, a few providers offer minor repairs.
- Locksmith Services: Locking your keys inside the vehicle can give you a horrible sinking feeling. Alleviate your feelings by contacting a roadside assistance provider and get your car back quickly and easily.
Does Roadside Assistance Cover Flat Tires?
The simple answer is YES. But your car must have a spare tire. Otherwise, the RSA service provider will tow your car to the nearest automotive shop for replacement.
It is important to be prepared for what to do when a flat tire occurs. So, know where your spare tire is and if it has enough air.
If a flat tire strikes, carefully and slowly get your vehicle beside the road or in a safe spot. Then call the provider.
Once the provider has arrived, they will inspect the reason for the flat and suggest a solution. They will replace the flat tire with the spare one.
What should I do if a spare tire is absent in my car?
Your vehicles will be towed to your nearest automobile shop for a new tire.
- Providers will not take a new or spare tire in your location.
Roadside Assistance Tire Repair: Can Roadside Assistance Plug a Tire?
Yes, roadside assistance can plug a tire.
Sometimes, a small screw or nail is the culprit for the flat. In that case, providers plug the tire.
In fact, technicians carry all the basic tools to resolve your flat tire problem. But for bigger issues, you will have to tow your car to a mechanic shop. The RSA providers can help you tow the vehicle.
How Much Does It Cost for Roadside Assistance to Change a Tire?
The cost range for roadside assistance to change a tire differs from insurance coverage to individual packages.
You must spend $5-$100 based on the service provider. Find the below chart for a better understanding.
|Considerations that Impact Cost
|Automotive Clube Membership
|i) Distance of towingii) Breakdown typeiii) Make, model and number of vehicles
|Roadside Assistance Association
|i) $50-$70/yearii) $90-$115/year
|i) For 5 milesii) For 100 miles
|Cell Phone Companies
|i) Free for the first monthii) $3/month
|i) Towing distanceii) Type of the problemiii) Vehicles model and make
If you are not a member of an RSA service provider, solving a minor problem may cost a lot.
The cost varies from $120-$300 based on the RSA complications.
Free Roadside Assistance Tire Change Guide
Roadside assistance tire change is a paid service. Most car insurance companies charge the fee as part of the premium.
However, a few credit card memberships and the specific club provide free RSA service. The companies are
- American Express Premium RSA
- Chase Roadside Dispatch
- Mastercard’s Master RSA
Auto clubs named National General Motor Club, Triple-A or AAA also offer free RSA service to their members. But paying the yearly bill for the membership is a must, and it is no exception for these companies as well.
Limitations of Roadside Assistance
Roadside assistance comes with a few limitations. So, knowing the limitations and exclusions before signing an agreement is important.
- Tires, Fluids, Fuel, etc. Cost: Technicians will help you change the flat tire or bring a gallon of fluid. But they will not pay the cost of the item.
- Number of Uses: Don’t think you will get unlimited assistance in a given period. Providers offer a limited number of uses for a plan. Such as, they offer up to 5 uses in a policy period.
- Distance of the Tow: Towing distance is also limited for most RSA providers. Undoubtedly, they will tow your vehicle as far as you need. But you will be responsible for covering the towing charge for an additional distance.
- Towing from Illegitimate Location: If your vehicle is parked illegally, RSA providers will not tow it.
How to Access Roadside Assistance Services?
You can access RSA services in several ways. The best way to access it is through an automobile insurance company.
A few car manufacturers also provide RSA service through the car warranty.
Some renowned RSA providers are listed below,
- American Family
You can request assistance by calling the provider’s number or using a mobile app.
roadside assistance related FAQs
Yes, if your vehicle is damaged, RSA covers towing up to a certain distance depending on the provider’s policy.
Yes, RSA patches tire in the case of minor problems. When a small nail or screw flats the tires, RSA will repair it.
Most RSA costs money. Either you must pay for the memberships or service costs (for non-members).
Parking your vehicle in the middle of a highway because of flat tires is frustrating. In this case, call an RSA provider without hesitation, as now you know the clear answer to whether roadside assistance covers flat tires.
They will do the needful so that you can reach your destination safely. This service is helpful, useful, affordable and quick.
Certification: BSc in Mechanical Engineering
Education: Mechanical engineer
Lives In: 539 W Commerce St, Dallas, TX 75208, USA
Rasel is an auto mechanic student and writer with over half a decade of experience in the automotive field. He has worked with top automotive brands such as Lexus, Quantum, and also owns two automotive blogs autocarneed.com and taxiwiz.com.