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Van breakdown cover is designed to help the van business owner to keep their van or fleet of vans on the road. This allows for the business to stay functioning with the shortest possible delay in service as possible by providing an on-call repair service 24/7. Whilst van breakdown cover can be included in your regular van insurance, it can also be purchased as a standalone product from a specialist in breakdown cover. Some of these better known providers include Green Flag, RAC and the AA.

van breakdown cover

Does my business need van breakdown cover?

If your business involves the moving of material or items with a van for a third party, then by having breakdown cover you can keep your business operating and meeting deadlines when a van becomes disabled and can no longer operate.

How does van breakdown cover keep the business operational?

The cover is the on-call service that repairs the disabled van at your home, on the roadside or at the business when it is necessary. This can be a broken belt, flat tire, dead battery or other simple repairs. A crew is dispatched to the scene of the disabled van and if possible on the repairs on the roadside are carried out to get the van mobile again. 

If the vehicle can’t be repaired on the road, then the van will be transported to a nearby service garage where repairs will be conducted. In some policies, a replacement van is then dispatched to help the business owner keep their schedule. 

Who is covered with van breakdown cover?

Unlike other types of cover, commercial van breakdown cover is for the vehicle and not the driver. Because of this, no matter who is operating the van can call for roadside assistance.

There are policies where a person is covered and not the vehicle. This is a personal breakdown cover and made for the individual that owns a private van. This is a specific cover and must be requested by the van owner. A business owner would not take out the personal breakdown cover.

Does breakdown cover include a replacement vehicle?

This question will be covered in the onward journey section of your breakdown cover policy. In general breakdown, providers will provide one of the following options if you do opt to include onward travel.

Replacement or rental van

If the van can not be fixed, a rental vehicle will be provided, expect the number of days is limited, example 3 days. The rental van will come with the standard van hire excess, but you can protect yourself by taking out standalone excess van hire cover.

Overnight Lodgings

This can be an attractive option, as it will allow you to continue your trip in your own vehicle once it has been fixed.

Alternative Transport

If you prefer to continue with your journey by taking alternative transport, taxi or train, for example. Limits will apply,  typical examples would be  £150 per person capped at  £500 for the whole party. 

What are the different levels of van breakdown cover?

Basic roadside cover

This is a cover that will dispatch a repair vehicle to the scene of the disabled van and commence making repairs. If repairs on the roadside are not possible, then the van will be towed to the nearest garage for repairs. The van has to be at a minimum one-mile away from your home or business location.

National roadside cover

This is the same as basic, but expanded. The tow, if necessary, will be transported to the destination of choice by the policyholder instead of to the nearest garage. This level might also have a mileage limitation to match the business service area of the policyholder. 

National roadside and home cover

This is the same as national roadside, with the addition of repairs being made at your home or business address. With this service, if the van has a dead battery on a winter morning or other needed service, it will be repaired in a short allotment of time.

European roadside cover

This type of cover is protection when going abroad. The area covered includes the countries on mainland Europe and the islands off the coast of Europe and England. This cover includes roadside repairs and the towing of the vehicle back to your residence, business address or garage in the UK.

National roadside cover

This is a specific cover that provides a replacement van when the van in need of roadside assistance can’t be repaired on the road. This makes it possible to keep the delivery service operating without limitations.

How many service calls are allowed annually?

No two businesses are alike, the number of breakdowns on an annual basis can’t be accurately predicted. Due to that, most van breakdown covers have no upper limit to the number of service calls that can be made each year.  QDOS offer an unlimited service.

What are the limitations of the van that can be covered?

  • The van can have a gross weight of up to 3.5 tonnes.
  • The outward dimensions also have to be 2.3 meters wide or less and not taller than 3 meters.
  • Both of those restrictions are so the standard tow vehicle can be used to haul the broken down van to a garage.
  • There might also be a time limitation with the mobile mechanic insurance on how long he can work on the broken down van on the roadside before it is required to be towed away. In most policies, this is 30 minutes.

Fleet van operators understand that over time, the vans in their fleet will break down. The fleet manager is responsible for van breakdown cover so that their business can keep their commitments to their customers. Operators without this cover will have disgruntled clients that could lead to the business failing due to the bad reputation of not being reliable.

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