Quad Bike Insurance
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- Third-party or comprehensive cover
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Quad bikes, also known as all-terrain vehicles, make getting around the countryside or rough terrain easy. These fast, single-seater vehicles are not just used to bomb around obstacle courses though. They are particularly useful for farming, land management, forestry, search and rescue, and even the police use them. Of course, racing and leisure is the most fun.
Some uses of a quad bike might not require insurance. Others will. Insurance can cover a whole host of incidents, but more comprehensive cover may be too expensive. An insurance policy that lacks cover may, on the other hand, leave you exposed to large financial payments. We’ll cover all of this, whether you need quad bike insurance, what it should cover, and how much you can expect to pay for it.
What is quad bike insurance?
Quad bike insurance can cover anything from fire and theft to injuries caused by a quad bike. Typical comprehensive coverage includes breakdown cover, personal accident cover, theft, damage and fire cover, and liability cover. This might not all be right for you, so it depends on what you want to do with your quad.
Quad bikes are getting more and more popular for certain jobs. Farmers often get around large estates on them and shepherding big flocks is done with them. They are hired out to people wanting to race and speed around courses. For commercial uses like this, additional business insurance should be purchased in the case of injury.
For personal use, there are generally three types of insurance, covering more and getting more expensive with each step.
The first is basic third-party cover. This only covers financial loss from injuring another person or vehicle. That’s it. It is the minimum type of insurance that you need to drive a quad bike on a road.
The next step up covers third-party injury and damage, but also covers fire and theft. It will help you replace a quad bike if it is damage by fire or stolen. But damage from normal use won’t be covered. This type of insurance can vary in price depending on different factors (which we’ll go into later).
The third type does everything the first two do, but also covers accidental damage and vandalism. It might also include some of the stuff covered above, like breakdown cover, including covering track day use.
Do you need to insure a quad bike?
The main difference between quad bike insurance policies is between road-use and off-road use. If you want to drive your quad on a road, including green lanes (unmetalled roads and by-ways open to all traffic), will require not just insurance but a licence too.
You’ll need a B1 licence. This allows you to drive four-wheeled vehicles weighing no more than 400kg, or 550kg fully-laden if it is meant to carry things. Quad bikes also have to be approved, registered, taxed and sometimes require a MOT certificate (if the quad is older than three years). You can register quad bikes with the DVLA. There are no laws saying that you have to wear a helmet when driving a quad on the road, except in Northern Ireland where you could be fined £500 for not wearing one.
The most basic type of insurance you’ll need to drive a quad on a road is third party insurance. This will cover the costs of injury or damage to another person or their vehicle if you crash.
If you are only using quad bikes off-road, you don’t need any insurance. You don’t need a licence or pay tax on the vehicle. No registration is necessary, though there is a voluntary one which could help police find it if it got stolen.
Quad bikes used in agricultural and forestry have to be registered with a number plate displayed. Third party insurance is required but you don’t have to get a MOT on it or pay taxes.
Is it expensive to insure a quad bike?
As with car insurance, quad bike insurance can vary wildly in price. It depends on:
- Age: The older you get, insurers think, the more experienced a driver you are. Less reckless too many say. This means it’s likely they will charge you less the older you are.
- Use: Track day use, where quad bikes are thrown around specially designed courses with tight corners and big jumps, will make coverage more expensive. If you are using it for work to get around the countryside, it will probably be cheaper. But recreational use, with no track day cover, is generally the cheapest. Some policies may be cheaper if only a limited number of miles are covered during the policy’s lifetime.
- Storage: Having the facilities to properly store and secure a bike will make it a lot cheaper to insure. This also depends where you live. Parking it overnight in a city on the street will most likely cost more to cover that locking it away in a rural garage.
- Type: Quad bikes are allowed to weigh up to 400kg (more if they’re designed for loads) but there are many that come in under that weight. Lighter, less powerful machines will cost less to insure.
This all means that insuring a quad bike can range from the low hundreds of pounds per year to thousands. It all depends on your circumstances, what you will do with the quad bike and how it is stored.
Another thing that might push up the price is that quad bikes are seen as specialist vehicles by some major insurers. That’s why it might be best to start by getting quotes from specialist insurers offering this type of cover.
So, whether you want to speed across the countryside, take a spin on a track, or use it to get around work and travel on small roads, it’s time to hop on your quad, safe knowing that you are covered.
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