Homeowner’s Insurance Water Damage – Coverage Explained

Water is one of the most harmful elements for a home and certainly, one of the more common Homeowner’s Insurance claims we see here at the agency. Homeowner’s Insurance water damage may seem innocent enough while you’re watering your lawn or taking a shower, but water can cause structural damage, unsightly blemishes, creates mold, and destroys flooring and more.

Water damage claims are quite common. However, not all types of water damage are covered under every homeowner’s policy. Some are more likely to be covered than others, which leads many people to question what types of water damage are usually covered by insurance.

These water events are usually COVERED.

  • Burst Pipes and Leaks: However, if you didn’t take precautions to prevent the problem your claim may be denied. An example of this would be a pipe freeze and bursts because you left your home unheated.
  • Water Damage From Appliances: Sudden leaking from an appliance that is not due to improper upkeep is typically covered under your homeowner’s insurance.
  • Roof Leaks: The roof repairs will be covered if an external factor like hail or a fallen tree caused the roof leak. If it is a maintenance issue that led to the leak you will likely have to cover the roof repairs yourself.

These events MAY OR MAY NOT BE COVERED depending on what options you have your home insurance.

  • Foundation Slab Leakage: A slab leak is the industry and insurance term for a leak in one of the water lines running below the concrete floor of your home. Repairing a slab leak involves locating the leak, accessing the leak through your foundation, repairing the water damage and plumbing, and repairing the hole through which the leak was accessed
  • Water Backup: A water back-up is an accumulation caused by a stoppage in the flow; something prevents the water from continuing down its path, so it is forced to reverse direction and go back the other way. This blockage could be anything from a collapsed pipe to a child’s toy.
  • Continuous and Repeated Seepage: Most policies only extend coverage for “sudden and accidental” discharge or overflow of water from a plumbing system. Seepage coverage applies to the gradual breakdown or disintegration of a pipe as opposed to a sudden rupture.

These events are NOT COVERED.

  • Flood Damage: If you live in a floodplain or want the additional coverage you will have to get a flood insurance policy in addition to your homeowners insurance. Contact one of our agents to find out more about purchasing flood insurance.
  • Backed Up Drain or Sewer Line: Damage from a backed up sewer line or drain, is not covered on standard home insurance policies. However, you can add this coverage on with an endorsement.
  • Ground Water Seepage: When water floods into a basement or causes foundation problems because of seepage from ground water this is considered a maintenance issue not an accident. To avoid this problem make sure sprinklers don’t spray on the house and cause puddles near the foundation, and adjust your landscaping so that the ground slopes away from the house.

Again, it’s important that you carefully review your policy with your agent to better understand what water damage is covered, what isn’t, if associated damage is covered and the repair/replacement limits for each.