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Tool insurance

Get a quote to insure your business tools

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What is tool insurance?

Tool insurance, also known as tool cover, is insurance to protect the tools of your trade. If you’re a tradesman, you rely on your tools to get the job done – and chances are you’ve invested a lot of money in making sure you have the right kit.

Tool insurance helps keep that investment safe. If your tools are lost or damaged, it’ll pay out to help you replace them.

Tool insurance policies come with overnight cover – meaning your tools are protected 24/7, whether they’re at home, at your business address, or in your locked van. This also includes tools in transit, so you’ll stay protected wherever you go.


Why should I get tool insurance?

If you're a tradesperson who works with tools every day, chances are you'll have your own set of expensive tools and equipment. Think about how much it would cost if you had to suddenly replace all of these tools in the event of fire or theft incident. That's why it's crucial to have the right protection in place, especially since tool theft is on the rise.

It's not just the cost of replacing tools, either. Consider how much potential business you could lose if something happened, plus the time and effort it would take to purchase everything again.

The right insurance can help cover the costs of replacing your tools and get you up and running again with minimal disruption to your business.

What does tool insurance cover?

Tool insurance will cover your tools against many different risks – but some things aren’t included. Here’s what’s on offer:

  • Tick

    What’s included

    • Theft and/or loss
      Your tools will be covered for up to £10,000 if they get stolen or lost

    • Tools kept in a van
      Tools left in your van overnight or in transit are covered

    • Natural disasters like fire, flooding, or storms
      Your tools will be covered for any damage caused by natural disasters

    • Deliberate vandalism or burglary
      Tools damaged or destroyed by criminal activity can be replaced or repaired

    • Accidental damage
      You are protected for any accidental damage as long as it isn't considered negligence

    • Hired in-plant cover
      Tools or machinery that you buy on hire-purchase can also be protected

    • Toolbox insurance
      In addition to the tools inside, you can also get cover for the toolbox itself

    • European Union cover
      Your policy can also provide cover for your tools if you are required to travel to Europe

  • Cross

    What isn’t

    • Wear and tear
      Any standard wear and tear that happens naturally to your tools over time isn't included in your policy

    • Deliberate damage
      You're not covered if you or your staff cause any intentional damage to your tools

    • Faulty tools
      If there's a fault with any of your tools or equipment, this should be covered by the warranty, not your insurance

    • Unattended van
      If your van is left unattended for more than 48 hours, your tools won't be covered by your tools insurance policy

How does tool insurance work?

Tool insurance works by protecting the tools you use up to a certain amount. If your tools would cost £5,000 to replace, you can take out £5,000 of insurance.

When choosing tool insurance, here's what to consider:

  • How much cover you need – This depends on how much you’ve invested in your tools, and how much of a risk you face if something going wrong

  • What's covered and what isn't – Some policies might not cover tools overnight or in transit. Others might only cover your own tools, and not those you’ve rented. So, it's important to double-check your policy documents

  • No fees – You shouldn't be charged any fees to make changes to your policy, even if you need to cancel. Policies are made straightforward with a flat excess of £200 for all claims


How much does tool insurance cost?

The cost of tool insurance can vary based on a few factors. Consider what you need from a policy and shop around to compare insurers.

Remember, it might be tempting to go for the cheapest policy, but this may have the most exclusions or the highest excess, which could make it the most expensive option, should you need to make a claim. 

Here are the main elements that affect the cost of tools insurance:

  • Plus

    The tools you need to insure

    The value of your tools and how many you want your policy to cover will directly affect the cost

  • Plus

    Excess you choose to pay

    By increasing your voluntary excess, you can reduce the cost of your insurance while choosing not to pay an excess will make insurance more expensive

  • Plus

    Where you keep your tools overnight

    Your insurance will be cheaper if you store your tools in a safe place when you're not using them

  • Plus

    Type of work you do

    Your occupation and the type of work you do can affect the risk of your tools being damaged, lost, or stolen, and so will affect your insurance premiums

How can I get cheaper tool insurance?

Here are some ways you can cut the cost of your tool insurance:

  • 1

    Compare quotes online

    Shop around and compare different levels of tool cover to find an affordable option for your business

  • 2

    Select a higher voluntary excess

    The higher the excess you choose to pay, the lower your premiums will be. Just make sure you can afford it, in case you need to make a claim

  • 3

    Choose the right level of cover

    Over-insuring your tools will cost you more, so double check the real value of them in order to get the appropriate level of cover

  • 4

    Check your home or business insurance

    Your tools may already be covered by your home or business insurance. If not, it may be cheaper to extend one of these policies to cover tools

Helpful tips for keeping your tools safe

Theft of tools is on the rise, so it's more important than ever to protect your equipment. Here are a few tips to keep your tools safe:

  • Secure storage

    Keep tools locked up inside your home or garage overnight if possible

  • Security systems

    Installing additional security measures like window grills and CCTV systems can deter thieves

  • Register your tools

    Register your tools’ serial numbers on an online database to track lost or stolen tools

  • Secure your van

    If tools must be stored in a van, ensure it has an alarm and is securely parked, preferably with rear doors against a wall

  • Be vigilant

    Never leave your tools unattended and check them regularly to give yourself peace of mind 

  • Mark your tools

    Marking tools with invisible/UV ink for identification will also help prevent theft

Sam Meadows

Our expert says


Theft of tools can be a huge problem for sole traders, so tool insurance can be a really good way to lessen the financial impact if you should get unlucky. Carefully work out the value of your tools, as that will determine the level of cover you buy. Overestimate the value, and you could end up paying too much for your premium but underestimate and you could be left with a shortfall if you make a claim.

- Sam Meadows, Insurance Expert

What other types of insurance can I get for my business?

Getting protection for your tools is crucial, but there are other types of insurance you might also need. Here’s what’s available:

  • Employers’ liability insurance

    If you have any employees, this is a legal requirement – it makes sure you’re protected if anyone who works for you becomes ill or is injured

  • Public liability insurance

    With public liability, you’re protected if there’s an accident and a passer-by is hurt – for instance, from falling building materials

  • PI insurance

    Professional indemnity insurance helps you out if you damage a client’s property or they’re unhappy with your work, and take you to court

  • Business buildings insurance

    If you have a brick and mortar business premises, this keeps you protected against damage from fire, flooding, storms, or vandalism

  • Trade credit insurance

    Trade credit insurance covers you in case customers fail to pay for your services. This could include ongoing debt and them paying later than agreed

  • Tradesman insurance

    Also known as builders insurance, this covers you for hazards and risks associated with specific trades, as well as protecting any equipment you need to do your job

Get a quote on tool insurance

Getting tool insurance quotes with MoneySuperMarket and our preferred partner SimplyBusiness is a simple way to find an affordable deal on cover. Here's how it works:

  • Tell us about your business

    Let us know about your tools and how much they’re worth, and we'll provide a quote tailored to your requirements

  • Check your requirements

    Check the policy offer meets the demands and needs of your business and read the policy documents

  • Purchase your policy

    Once you're happy with your policy offer, simply click through to complete your purchase.

If your business relies on your tools, it’s worth thinking about taking out a tool insurance policy. Try to add up the value of all the tools you own – consider how much it would cost to replace them, not how much you paid for them originally. If it would be difficult for you to replace your tools, tool insurance might be the smart choice.  

You can usually insure any tools up to £10,000. That includes handheld tools, power tools, and plant equipment. Some insurers might exclude some specialised tools, so it’s worth checking your policy document carefully.

If you have van insurance, there’s a chance your tools are already covered while they’re in your vehicle.

If not, look for a tool insurance policy with overnight cover and tools in transit cover – this means that they’re always protected, even when they’re in your van or on the move. 

Tools are also covered if they are stored in a car too.

Some types of business insurance, such as business contents insurance or public liability insurance, will let you include tool insurance as an add-on. It can be more convenient and save you money, so check your existing policy.

Tools in transit insurance covers your tools while they’re being driven around, loaded, or unloaded. 

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