Mechanical breakdown insurance isn't the same as car insurance. Your state imposes specific requirements about how much car insurance you must carry, but no rule says you must purchase mechanical breakdown insurance.
If you cause an accident while driving, your liability car insurance policy pays to repair any property you damage, including other cars and structures. It may also cover medical bills if people were hurt in the accident. If you also have full coverage that includes comprehensive and collision coverage, your auto insurance covers the costs of repairing your car after you pay the deductible.
Mechanical breakdown insurance
Mechanical breakdown insurance helps pay for car repairs resulting from a faulty part or system. If your car breaks down, you are responsible for paying for the repairs so you can get back on the road. You may pay a deductible, and you'll have to follow the rules of your mechanical breakdown policy about where you get the work done and how you'll make a claim.
Mechanical breakdown insurance doesn't provide the same coverage as your auto insurance policy. So, if you are in a fender-bender, your car insurance may cover the costs of making your car look the way it did before the accident. You would take it to an auto body shop for repair. Your car insurance doesn't cover the cost of repairing your vehicle if a part fails and the car isn't running correctly.
If your car breaks down because a mechanical part broke or failed, you will take it to a shop specializing in fixing the engine, transmission, and other mechanical systems. Mechanical breakdown insurance may help you pay the bill. Your auto insurance doesn't cover anything related to your car's parts or systems.
Neither auto insurance nor mechanical breakdown insurance covers the cost of routine maintenance like tires, oil changes, windshield wiper replacement, and bulb replacement.