Close this search box.
Close this search box.
Close this search box.


Get the latest in print & creative arts business updates, trends, and inspiration.

Will Insurance Cover an Equipment Breakdown?

Imagine it’s a typical July day. You own a 30,000-square-foot office building that is 85% occupied. And the air conditioning and ventilation systems stop working. The outside temperature is in the 90s and the humidity is high. It doesn’t take long before the tenants start to complain.

The contractor you summon determines that an electrical arc fried the circuit board that controls the systems.

The board must be replaced, but it will take up to five business days for it to arrive. In the meantime, the building is unfit for people to work in, and the leases oblige you to credit tenants’ rents for periods when the building is uninhabitable for more than a day. In short, you face thousands of dollars in repairs and much more in lost rent.

While your property insurance policy will cover property damage from events such as fires or explosions, it will not cover the equipment or lost income from the downtime during repairs.

But, equipment breakdown insurance will.

Equipment breakdown insurance

This form of insurance is not a substitute for other property coverage. It will not pay for damage caused by fire, lightning, explosions from sources other than pressure vessels, floods, earthquakes, vandalism, and other causes of loss covered elsewhere.

Equipment breakdown policies are designed to fill in the gaps left by other policies, not to replace them. Also, they do not cover mechanical breakdowns that result from normal wear and tear as a device ages.

Also known as boiler and machinery insurance, or mechanical breakdown insurance, equipment breakdown insurance helps cover:

  • The cost of repairing or replacing the equipment
  • Lost business income from a covered event
  • Extra expenses you incur due to a covered event
  • Damaged or spoiled inventory

There are five categories of equipment that equipment breakdown insurance typically covers:

  1. Mechanical. This includes motors, engines, generators, elevators, water pumps and specialized production and manufacturing equipment.
  2. Electrical. This includes transformers, electrical panels and cables.
  3. Computers and communications. This includes computer systems, phone systems, voice mail systems, security systems and fire alarm systems.
  4. Air conditioners and refrigeration systems.
  5. Boilers and pressure equipment.

Why you need it

Many businesses rely heavily on machines in their daily operations, from computers and printers to refrigeration equipment, elevators, and manufacturing equipment.

For some, the cost of repairs to this equipment and resulting downtime can have a serious impact on company finances. Such businesses should seriously consider buying equipment breakdown insurance.

VMA has been helping print and other manufacturing to protect their business since 1985. Contact us to discuss this crucial form of coverage. Email Shannon Wolford, VMA Director of Sales and Membership at shannon@visualmediaalliance.org today.

2024 Student
Scholarship Application

To complete your application please provide the referring teachers information in the form below. The referring teacher’s email must be associated with an accredited Northern California college.

2024 Student
Scholarship Application

Sign Up to Start Receiving Chronicles

Contact me for the next session

Contact me about the next Print 101 class


Get a Free eBook on using Ancilliary Benefits to Retain Employees