What is Sewer Backup Coverage and Do You Need It?

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What is Sewer Backup Coverage and Do You Need It?

See how we're different

Did you know that most homeowners policies do not cover sewer backup unless sewer backup insurance coverage is added?

When a sewer backs up into a home, it can damage floors, walls, furniture and electrical systems. This can create costly damages and if you aren’t covered, you’ll be liable for home repairs and cleaning costs out of pocket.


In this article we’ll cover how much coverage you’ll need, reasoning for considering sewer backup cover and way to prevent backups from happening.

The Amount of Sewer Backup Coverage You Need



Let’s cut right to the case here. How much would sewer backup coverage cost?

Well, the Insurance Information Institute says sewer-backup damage often can be covered for an additional premium of just $40 to $50 per year. That’s a little as $4.00 a month for damages that can cost well over $30,000 – $50,000.

It is important to note that, An insurance company will be reluctant to offer sewer backup coverage to a homeowner who has a history of groundwater and seepage issues for instance. In this case, if they are willing to offer this coverage to you, you will most likely pay between $200 – $400 per year.


4 Reasons You Need to Consider Getting Sewer Backup Coverage

1. Your Homeowners / Flood Insurance Policy Doesn’t Cover Sewer Backup


Unsure whether your home insurance policy includes water backup coverage? Then it’s time to give your independent insurance agent a call.

Water backup coverage is an optional addition that can be added to a standard homeowners, condo or renters insurance policy. Without the endorsement, if your house sustains water damage, you will have to pay for the costs of repairs and damages out of your own pockets.


2. It’s actually quite inexpensive!


Sewer backup coverage is not as costly as you may think. On average, it costs around $40 to $250 each year, depending on the likelihood of you experiencing water and sewage damage due to compromised sewer pipelines and the limits you choose.

Since the basement is at a higher risk of experiencing water damage, you need to select your limits based on the type of items stored in your basement.


3. Tree Roots Can Cause Damage to Your Plumbing System


Tree roots can damage your plumbing system if they grow within the pipes. Tree roots seek water and nutrients, which they find within the pipes. Tree roots find their way into the pipes through the cracks and grow in all different directions.


What causes a sewer backup?


If you dispose of grease and paper products down the drain, it will cause damage to the sewer system. Therefore, you should not flush grease or paper products such as baby wipes, wet wipes, dental floss, paper towels down the drain. They will find their way into the sewer and cause major damage to it.

It will end up costing you thousands of dollars in repairs. If you pour grease down the drain, it will cause the pipes to become clogged and lead to sewer overflows. Even though the effects of disposing of grease and paper products down the drain on your sewer system will not be immediate, you will experience them down the line.

Old and combined sewer systems in the United States are also responsible for damage to the sewer system. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), overflows and backups from combined sewer systems affect residents in 32 states in the country. The United States is still behind in updating old sewer systems and combined sewage systems causing the pipes to become clogged with debris, resulting in sewage backup in the basement.

6 Ways to Prevent Sewage Backup


You can reduce the risk of sewage backup by taking the following measures to prevent it from occurring:


 Do not pour grease and cooking oil down your drains. Though its a liquid when hot, once it hits your cold pipes it turns solid!

 If you have small kids, you can put locks on the toilets. This will prevent them from throwing toys or other solids down the toilet.

 Avoid throwing wet ones down the toilet, even the flushable kind.

 Keep an eye on larger trees growing near your sewage line. Larger trees mean deeper roots, which can break your pipes!

Consider replacing clay or metal sewer lines. We suggest you consider replacing those old lines with today’s newer plastic or PVC pipe.

 To ensure nothing hinders the functioning of your sump pump, you can install a battery backup or a water powered a backup sump pump

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 Informational statements regarding insurance coverage are for general description purposes only. These statements do not amend, modify or supplement any insurance policy. Consult the actual policy or your agent for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services and programs which may be available to you. Your eligibility for particular products and services is subject to the final determination of underwriting qualifications and acceptance by the insurance underwriting company providing such products or services. Statements on this website as to policies and coverages provide general information only. This information is not an offer to sell insurance.