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Home > Learning Center > Home Insurance

Backup of sewer and drains...
Will your homeowners insurance cover this?

Fall and spring tend to be our wettest seasons making our homes most susceptible to the backup of sewer or drain lines. While these events don't occur often, when they do, the problem can be a small disaster. Did you know a standard homeowner's insurance policy excludes coverage for such an event?

It's true. The backup of sewer and drains as well as the failure of a sump pump is excluded. The damage you sustain from either of these problems will not be covered and you'll be responsible to pay for the loss and the clean up. If you have a finished basement, or use your basement area for storage, you shouldn't go without this coverage endorsement.

Heavy rains can trigger a backup. A storm sewer or sanitary sewer backs up into your home and usually comes in through a sump well, washtubs in the basement, or toilets in the basement. However, the damage can happen anywhere in the house.  Sump pump failures normally occur from power outages or motor failures.  Sump pumps run on electricity and during a bad storm many times the power goes out.  That’s when you need the sump pump the most, to pump the heavy water from the rain out of the basement.

The damage can be quite costly. Normally damage occurs in the basement, which houses the mechanical systems of the house such as: washer and dryer, furnace, hot water tank and the numerous items people store there. Water or sewage usually destroys anything it comes in contact with. For the thousands of dollars in damage, it would be well worth purchasing the additional coverage with your homeowner's policy to cover such an event.

Be sure to ask your agent about this coverage to make sure you already have it on your policy or to purchase it. This coverage can often be purchased as an endorsement on its own, or with an endorsement that will expand/increase other coverages on the policy. The additional cost runs between $25 and $50 annually. Well worth the peace of mind. The key is to ask your agent or company what you best option is.

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