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Premiums for automobile insurance encompass a variety of factors used to assess the risk of a particular driver. Since some aspects of determining the cost of your auto insurance policy are out of your hands, it's helpful to learn just how you might be able to reduce your premiums.

First, make sure you understand the concept of auto insurance - how much it costs, exactly what it covers, and what makes the premium increase or decrease. Ask your agent how much one traffic violation on your driving record will raise your rates and how you can have a traffic ticket dismissed. Even drivers who haven’t received traffic tickets may be eligible for a 10% auto insurance discount for three years when they complete a defensive driving course. To learn more, ask your auto insurance carrier about their defensive driving course discounts.

Next, be sure your vehicles are in excellent mechanical shape. When you buy a new or pre-owned vehicle, try to select a mid-range model - nothing fancy or high-powered, but nothing too old either. Older vehicles may not have safety features, which help keep you safe in a crash and also help you earn insurance discounts. Your insurance company may offer discounts for the following safety features. If not, it pays to shop around. Discounts for vehicle safety features vary widely among insurance companies.

  • Air Bags: All vehicles sold in the US must have driver and passenger-side dual airbags. Air bags must be used with safety belts for maximum effectiveness.

  • Head Injury Protection: This feature, which lessons the blow if your head hits the interior roof of your vehicle, has become standard in recent years. Older models may not have this safety feature.

  • Advanced Headrests: These systems allow the back of the seat and headrest to move down and back if the vehicle is hit from the rear, reducing the forward motion and thus decreasing the severity of head and neck injuries.

  • Automatic Daytime Running Lights: This feature means that your vehicle’s headlights are always on, even during daylight, which gives your vehicle greater visibility.

  • Anti-lock Brake System: This feature eliminates the need to "pump the brakes" when you have to stop quickly, preventing the wheels from locking up and the vehicle from skidding. ABS pumps the brakes for the driver; the driver keeps constant pressure on the brake pedal and concentrates on steering. This helps the driver regain control of the vehicle quickly in bad weather conditions or to act quickly to prevent a crash.

  • Traction Control: While ABS helps drivers maintain control while braking, traction control helps them do so while accelerating. This feature stops the spinning of a wheel due to wet roads, loose gravel, or fast acceleration by braking it, reducing the fuel or cutting spark plug ignitions, depending on the type of system, which improves traction.

  • Electronic Stability System: This feature coordinates the ABS, Traction Control, and the "yaw" of your vehicle (how much the vehicle rocks side to side). The system reduces tire spinning, skidding, and tractionless cornering, keeping the vehicle's tires in maximum contact with the road.

Third, if you have a teen driver in your family, continue driver instruction for your teen even after she or he is licensed. Make sure your teen follows the graduated driver licensing laws in your state. Keep track of your teen's progress by having them drive with you in the front passenger seat occasionally. Monitor your teen's cell phone bill to make sure the teen isn't making calls or sending texts during times she or he is usually on the road.

Auto insurance is a necessary expense, but there are ways to minimize the cost. Conducting a little research to determine how to save money on auto insurance is a worthwhile effort.

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Blogger Unknown said...

I think it’s not required to go to physical places to get your vehicles insured anymore. It can be done online, just visit: www.online-autoinsurance.net.

November 5, 2009 at 12:18 AM  

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