Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Busted Pipes?

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Are busted pipes covered under standard homeowners insurance policies?
When and how does homeowners insurance cover busted pipes?
Why doesn’t homeowners insurance cover busted pipes?
If homeowners insurance doesn’t cover busted pipes, what will?
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Are busted pipes covered under standard homeowners insurance policies?

As a new homeowner, I’m curious about what all is covered under my insurance. Sometimes I worry about my plumbing system and the possibility of pipes breaking and causing leaks or even flooding. I don’t want to get stuck paying for the broken pipes and any resulting water damage at the same time. Are busted pipes covered under standard homeowners insurance policies?

Not exactly. Standard homeowners insurance policies provide coverage for the damage caused by busted pipes, because water damage is a covered peril. You’d also get reimbursed for temporary living arrangements, such as a hotel room, under your loss of use coverage if the water damage was so bad that it made your home uninhabitable during repairs. But your homeowners insurance won’t cover the actual pipe itself.

When and how does homeowners insurance cover busted pipes?

Your homeowners insurance will only provide coverage for damage caused by and surrounding busted pipes. There are two main ways your policy covers you.

Homeowners insurance typically covers the following scenarios related to busted pipes:

  • Water damage: Since water damage is covered by homeowners policies, your insurance company will pay to repair the damage caused by leaking or busted pipes in many cases. Your personal property that is damaged by the water is usually also covered. Resulting mold/mildew is usually covered, too.
  • Destruction necessary to get to the busted pipes: In order to get to those leaking or busted pipes, you’ll often have to tear through the wall, or maybe even through the foundation. Your homeowners policy will cover the damage done to the house to get to the pipes in order to replace them, but not for the replacement of the pipes themselves.

You can work with an independent insurance agent to review your specific homeowners policy if you’d like more clarification on the exact coverage you have concerning busted pipes. However, standard policies do not include replacement coverage for the actual busted pipes in any scenario. Your homeowners insurance will only protect you from the resulting damage.

Why doesn’t homeowners insurance cover busted pipes?

Simply because most causes of busted pipes are not covered perils under homeowners insurance. Typically, pipes burst because of negligence on the homeowner’s part, or their failure to keep up with routine maintenance to their plumbing. Pipes may also burst in extreme cold temperatures if the homeowner fails to keep the heat on. Last, underground pipes may burst due to natural disasters such as earthquakes, which are another non-covered peril.

If homeowners insurance doesn’t cover busted pipes, what will?

Your homeowners insurance policy will provide coverage for damage done by the busted pipes and any necessary destruction to your home while getting to the busted pipe for repair or replacement. But there’s not any type of insurance policy out there that actually covers busted pipes themselves.

You may find coverage for pipes that burst due to earthquakes, landslides, or soil changes under a special type of policy known as earth movement insurance. An independent insurance agent can help you find the right policy for your needs.

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TrustedChoice.com Article | Reviewed by Paul Martin

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