Motorists who modify their cars are more likely to be involved in an accident, according to a study by MoneySupermarket.com.

The survey found drivers of cars fitted with aftermarket parts are 27% more likely to be end up in a collision. Of the drivers who were surveyed, 28% of modified car owners had been involved in an accident over the last five years, compared with 22% of drivers of standard vehicles.

Before you think of modified cars being what we associate with it not quite!

20% of the 27,000 insurance enquires looked at involved fitment of a tow bar as a flagged modification, with the next most popular being alloy wheels (15%) and aftermarket rear parking sensors (9%).

It appears, however, that many motorists don’t actually notify insurers of the changes they’ve made to their cars. In a separate poll, nearly half (45%) confessed they’d kept the extras they’d added to their motor a secret from their insurance provider.

Modifications to your car can affect your car insurance positively or negatively, depending on what you add. In the eyes of the policy provider, any adjustment they weren’t aware of can be in breach of a car’s cover agreement, meaning the driver risks missing out on a payout when they make a claim even if the crash wasn’t their fault.

“There are numerous reasons why you might want to modify your car, from improving performance to making it more aesthetically pleasing.

While we generally think of modifications as loud exhausts and body kits, something as small as getting a parking sensor installed can count as a modification, so it’s worth notifying your insurer whenever you make any change to your vehicle.

Different insurers have alternative views on what constitutes a modification, so it’s worth taking the time to check if any changes you make will impact your policy. If in doubt, talk to your insurer.”

Tom Flack, MoneySupermarket’s editor-in-chief