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Wear and Tear Exclusion


The Wear and Tear Exclusion is a term in insurance policies which states that damages or losses caused by ordinary usage, daily wear and tear or gradual deterioration are not covered. This is based on the understanding that these damages are inevitable over time and occur due to normal use. It is therefore the policyholder’s responsibility to maintain and repair their possessions to prevent such damage.


Wear and Tear Exclusion: wi:r ænd tɛr ɪksˈkluːʒn

Key Takeaways

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  1. Definition: Wear and Tear Exclusion refers to a clause included in many insurance policies that protects the insurer from having to cover the costs of normal damage that occurs over time due to normal use or aging. Essentially, it excludes coverage for damage that has not resulted from a specific, covered event, but instead from day-to-day usage.
  2. Implications: Due to the Wear and Tear Exclusion, policyholders will not receive compensation for depreciation or for damages caused by regular wear and tear or gradual deterioration. This could include things like rust, corrosion, or general aging.
  3. Necessity: The inclusion of a Wear and Tear Exclusion in an insurance policy helps to prevent policyholders from taking advantage of their coverage for inevitable occurrences or lack of maintenance. It is essential for maintaining the financial stability of insurance companies and for encouraging policyholders to properly maintain their property.



The Wear and Tear Exclusion is a crucial term in business and finance as it pertains to the conditions under which an insurance company will not provide coverage. This principle acknowledges that all assets, be it machinery, buildings, or equipment, naturally depreciate over time due to regular use, aging, and weather phenomena, which is termed as “wear and tear”. Insurance policies generally do not cover such predictable and gradual degradation because it’s viewed as the owner’s responsibility to maintain their assets. Therefore, understanding the Wear and Tear Exclusion is important for business owners to manage their assets better, budget for maintenance costs, and avoid any misconceptions about their insurance coverage.


The Wear and Tear Exclusion is a critical component in insurance policies, especially those concerning property, whether personal or commercial. Its primary purpose is to limit the liability of insurance companies for damages that result from the ordinary and regular use of the property. Such damages inevitably occur over time due to the natural aging process, repeated use, or gradual deterioration. The concept behind this exclusion is that regular maintenance or replacement of worn-out parts is the owner’s responsibility and not something the insurance company should cover.This exclusion serves as a risk management tool for insurance companies that provides a distinguishable boundary between insurable and non-insurable risks. It encourages property owners to maintain their possessions adequately to prolong their usable life and prevent premature failure or breakdown. Without this exclusion, owners might neglect regular maintenance, knowing that the insurance will replace worn-out or damaged items. This, in turn, would lead to an increased frequency of claims and higher costs for insurance companies, potentially causing insurance premiums to rise for all policyholders.


1. Vehicle Insurance: In automobile insurance, wear and tear exclusion is a common policy provision. This means the insurer won’t cover costs associated with the regular aging and depreciation of the car, such as brake pad replacements, tires wearing out, or paint discoloration.2. Property Insurance: In home or property insurance, damage from normal wear and tear is typically excluded from coverage. For example, if a homeowner’s carpet naturally wears out over time and needs to be replaced, the insurance company would not cover the cost because it is considered a routine maintenance issue.3. Equipment Leasing: Many equipment leasing contracts require the lessee to maintain the equipment and not subject it to more than “reasonable wear and tear”. For instance, if you are leasing a coffee machine for your restaurant, the cost to repair or replace regular wear and tear parts like gaskets or filters would not be covered by the lease firm – this cost falls on the lessee, not the lessor.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ)

What is the Wear and Tear Exclusion?

Wear and Tear Exclusion is a clause frequently used in insurance policies, predominantly the property and casualty insurance sector. It excludes coverage for damages deemed to have happened naturally over time through regular use or aging.

Why does the Wear and Tear Exclusion exist?

This exclusion exists to prevent businesses or individuals from claiming compensation for assets that naturally degrade over time and would inevitably require repair or replacement.

Is Wear and Tear Exclusion applicable to all types of insurance?

No, it’s primarily applicable to property and casualty insurance. These refer to insurances like home owners insurance, car insurance, and more.

Can normal aging of the assets be covered by other types of insurance?

In some cases, insurers offer extended warranty products or maintenance contracts which may offer coverage for normal aging or wear and tear.

Is there a standard definition of ‘wear and tear’ in insurance policies?

The phrase ‘wear and tear’ isn’t typically defined in insurance policies. It’s generally considered to be the gradual deterioration of an asset due to normal use, aging, or exposure to the elements.

Can I dispute a wear and tear exclusion claim refusal?

Yes, it can be disputed if you believe your claim was wrongly categorized under the wear and tear exclusion. However, you would need to provide evidence to back your claim and show that the damage was caused by a sudden or unexpected event.

How can I prevent my claims from getting denied under wear and tear exclusion?

To avoid claims falling under wear and tear exclusion, ensure to conduct regular maintenance on your assets and keep them in the best possible condition. If damage occurs, address it immediately instead of letting it deteriorate further.

Are there insurance policies without the Wear and Tear Exclusion?

Insurance policies typically have wear and tear exclusions to prevent insurance fraud. However, consult with your insurance provider or broker as they may have unique offerings.

Related Finance Terms

  • Depreciation: The decrease in the value of an asset over time due to usage, wear and tear, or obsolescence.
  • Insurance Policy: A contract between an insurance company and a policyholder to provide coverage for specific types of damage or loss.
  • Replacement Cost: The amount of money required to replace an asset at its current market value.
  • Physical Damage Coverage: A type of insurance coverage that pays for damage to the insured’s property as a result of various types of risks.
  • Asset Lifespan: The expected duration of time that an asset is usable, functional, and able to contribute to the production of goods or services.

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