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Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Water Leaks?

If a water leak damages your home, one of the first things you should do is find out whether your insurance covers the repair costs. Here are some points to consider as you conduct your search. 

Homeowner’s Insurance Covers Some Types of Water Damage 

Homeowners can expect their insurance to help pay for repairs any time water damage occurs because of a sudden, accidental plumbing leak. For instance: 

  • The water heater ruptures and floods your basement. 
  • The washing machine supply hose breaks and damages the laundry room. 
  • The dishwasher overflows and soaks the kitchen floor. 
  • A frozen pipe bursts and drenches the ceiling below. 

Two types of coverage may apply, depending on what’s damaged: 

  • Dwelling coverage helps pay for damage to the structure of your home, such as flooring, drywall, and insulation. 
  • Personal property coverage helps pay to replace any possessions damaged by water leaks, such as furniture, electronics, or appliances. 

Remember, you will need to meet your deductible before coverage kicks in. Coverage limits also apply, which affects the overall reimbursement you will receive. Brush up on your policy and adjust your coverage if needed before a water leak occurs. 

Some Types of Water Damage are Not Covered 

Homeowners insurance does not cover all types of water damage. Don’t expect reimbursement for the following: 

  • Neglected maintenance: One of the first things a claims agent will do is determine if unresolved maintenance issues caused the leak. For instance, your insurer may deny coverage for a slow toilet leak that damages the bathroom floor if the agent determines that you neglected to repair the fixture in a timely manner. 
  • Repairing the source of the leak: Expect homeowners insurance to cover the damage from a plumbing leak, not fix the source of the leak itself. This means you won’t get reimbursed for a broken water heater, washing machine, or toilet. 
  • Sewer backups: Traditional homeowners insurance policies typically don’t cover water damage from a backed-up sewer or drain line. However, you can purchase this type of coverage to ensure reimbursement in this situation. 
  • Flooding from external sources: Flooding may occur from rainstorms, oversaturated soil, broken levees and dams, rising rivers, and tidal surges. Standard homeowner’s insurance covers none of these external sources of flood damage. For that, you must purchase a separate flood insurance policy. 

Home maintenance can help prevent many types of water leaks. It’s also a good idea to check with your insurance agent about what is and isn’t covered by your policy. Ask what it costs to sign up for additional coverage so you can decide what’s most appropriate for your home. 

Whether your insurance pays for the damage from a recent water leak or not, DKI Services can help you recover. Contact us to schedule water damage restoration as soon as you notice leaking pipes, broken plumbing fixtures, or unusual wet spots throughout your home. We have 64 years of experience and 500 locations across North America.