When we find ourselves dealing with the challenges of an unforeseen home repair, the first question we have is, “How much is this going to cost?” That question is usually followed by another: “Will my homeowner’s insurance cover any of this?”
Below we offer some of the knowledge we have gained in our decades of experience providing professional sewer repair. Please note however, that an insurance expert in your local area will have the best information for your specific situation. (If you would like a referral for a Bay Area homeowner’s insurance agent, we have a few agents on our preferred list. Contact us for more information.)
Does Homeowner’s Insurance Cover Sewer Line Repair?
If you’re wondering if sewer line replacement or repair is covered by homeowner’s insurance, you may not like the answer. Unfortunately, it’s rare that homeowner’s insurance will cover sewer line repair or replacement – unless the damage was caused by another party (e.g., tenant, neighbor, contractor) or “an act of God,” which is also known as force majeure in some insurance contracts.
It makes no difference if you need a full sewer line replacement or a spot repair. If the sewer line is damaged because it’s old or due to normal wear over several years, the insurer will not pay your claim.
You may find information online that claims your insurance will cover the repair if your sewer pipe sustains a “sudden leak.” This may be technically true, but pipe leaks rarely happen abruptly. Sewer pipe leaks are most often caused by damage that occurs over an extended period of time (e.g., root intrusion, corrosion, pipe joint offsets, etc.).
Should you file a claim with your homeowner’s insurance for pipe replacement?
There are certain situations in which you should file a claim – to help cover the cost of sewer lateral work, for example. You should also file a claim with your insurance provider, if your sewer line was damaged by an Act of God (force majeure) or by the negligence of another person.
An “Act of God” examples:
- A fallen tree breaks your sewer line
- A contractor breaches your sewer line while digging
An “Act of another person” examples:
- A tenant pours cement down into the sewer line and it can’t be salvaged
It’s best to assume your homeowner’s insurance will not cover earthquake, flood, or fire incidents that cause damage to a sewer pipe. Supplemental insurance is usually required for damage caused by these types of disaster events – particularly in the San Francisco Bay Area and East Bay.
Choose a Sewer Repair Plumber You Can Trust
If you have further questions about using your homeowner’s insurance for plumbing services, feel free to contact us. It’s important to find a company that act as an advocate and adviser for you. You deserve high-quality work, professionalism, and reliable advice.
Pipe Spy has been solving sewer plumbing problems others since 1998. For more information on your sewer repair options, contact us to request a free quote.