If you have a homeowners insurance policy or are thinking about getting a homeowners insurance policy, you may be wondering if they cover plumbing repairs. The answer is a little more complicated than a simple yes or no. It depends on the repair status of the pipes, the age, and the precautions you took to prevent water damage from bursting or leaking pipes.
What Homeowners Insurance Is Designed to Do
Homeowners insurance is designed to help with repair and replacement costs from damage that is sudden, unexpected, and unanticipated. It usually covers damage caused by fire, theft, vandalism and certain weather events. Plumbing systems may or may not fall into any of these categories.
Homeowners Insurance and Residential Plumbing Systems
Your homeowner’s insurance policy may cover damage from a water leak due to a burst pipe.
Plumbing Events that Homeowners Insurance May Cover
- Sudden Burst Pipe – Your homeowner’s insurance policy may cover a pipe that suddenly bursts if the pipes are not old, well-maintained, and in reasonably good condition other than the area of the pipe that burst.
- Frozen Pipes – Homeowners’ insurance may cover damage caused by a pipe that froze and burst, providing precautions were taken to prevent the freezing pipes, like adding heat tape, having frost-free outdoor spigots, leaving your faucets dripping when temperatures reach below 32 degrees, and insulating pipes that can be insulated.
- Structural Damage Caused By a Burst Pipe – If a pipe burst and causes water damage in your home, your insurance provider may cover the damage under your Dwelling Coverage but not the repair to the burst pipe. For example, your badly decayed pipes burst and caused structural damage to your home. Your insurance provider may help pay for the cleanup and repairs to your home but may not cover the repair or replacement of the pipe that burst.
- Personal Property that Is Ruined by a Burst Pipe – If a pipe bursts and damages clothing, electronics, and furniture, your homeowner’s insurance may help cover the costs of replacing those items under the Property Coverage portion of your homeowner’s insurance policy.
Plumbing Events that Homeowners Insurance Does Not Cover
Your homeowner’s insurance claim for your burst pipe may be denied if any of these things are true.
- The Damage Was Caused by a Long-Term Leak – If your plumbing system has had slow leaks for months and years, your homeowner’s insurance would most likely not cover the damage because they would say it was caused by lack of maintenance.
- Negligence by the Homeowner – If someone in the house left a faucet running for two hours and the sink, bathtub or shower overflowed as a result, homeowners insurance would most likely not cover the damage because they would say that the homeowner or resident was negligent by not checking to make sure the fixture was off.
- The Plumbing System Is Old – If your plumbing system is old, corroded, rusted or otherwise showing signs of advanced age, it’s not likely that your insurance company will cover the damage caused by a burst pipe.
- The Damage Was Caused by a Malfunctioning Sump Pump – Most homeowners insurance policies exclude water damage caused by a burst sump pump. You’ll need to check your policy to see if sump pump damage is covered. If it’s not, there’s a good chance you can add sump pump coverage to your policy for an additional fee.
Additional Insurance Policies That May Help With Plumbing Damage
If you are worried about water damage to your home from burst pipes, you may want to consider adding certain coverages to your homeowner’s insurance policy.
- Flood Insurance – Homeowners insurance does not typically cover damage caused by an overflowing body of water, like the ocean, river, or lake. To get coverage for these events, you should purchase flood insurance.
- Mold Damage Insurance – If your property is at high risk for mold damage, your insurance provider may be able to offer you additional coverage for this risk.
- Sump Pump Insurance – If your home uses a sump pump to remove water from your basement or crawlspace, you’ll most likely need a separate sump pump insurance policy to cover water backups from the sump pump.
Homeowners Insurance with Fearnow in Florida
If you need homeowners insurance in Florida, Fearnow can help you find an affordable policy that financially protects you if certain unexpected damages occur. If you need additional coverages, like flood insurance, mold damage insurance, and sump pump insurance, we can help you explore affordable options.
To learn more about our homeowner’s insurance policies and to get a quote, give us a call at 813-689-8878.