You may be surprised how extensive your homeowner’s insurance is when it comes to covering damage to your house and property. One area that often gets overlooked is the systems that provide the water, heat, and cooling to your home. In case they are damaged, most home insurance policies will cover the repairs or replacement, if needed.
What are Household Systems?
This includes the plumbing, heating, and air conditioning, includeing subsidiary systems, such as, vents and sewer lines. Basically, damage that is caused to these systems may come from a variety of sources, but there may also be limitations to what is covered.
- Air Conditioning, Heating, and Plumbing
- Electrical Services Panel, Emergency Generators, and Central Vacuums
- Filtration, Pumps, and Heating Equipment for Pool or Spa
- Boilers, Radiant Floor Heating, and Furnaces
- Chair Lifts, Elevators, and Home Security Systems
You will need to check your policy to see the extent of the coverage, but essentially anything to do with home systems like the ones listed above should be in the policy. Keep in mind that all such policies will pay for damages that were caused by a sudden accidental breakdown that was mechanical or electrical in nature. This means that long-term deterioration of such systems may not be covered by your policy.
One important distinction is that most homeowner’s insurance does not cover flood damage. Even if your plumbing needs to be repaired, the damaged caused by the water that is spilled may not be covered. You will need to check with your insurance agent or company to ensure you understand fully the extent of the damage that is covered by your policy.
How the Coverage Works
If your household systems were damaged by a sudden, unexpected mechanical or electrical breakdown, the first step is to call your insurance company who can guide you through how to file a proper claim.
Document the Damage: You’ll need to take photos of the equipment that was damaged to file with your claim. This will show what happened and how it affected your household systems.
Get Estimates: You will want to get estimates from repair services so you can present the insurance company with the amount it will take for repair or replacement. You may be directed by the insurance company or you may have to choose a repair service on your own.
File the Claim: Once you have all the pertinent information, you can formally file the claim with your insurance company.They may send a claims adjuster to review the damage that occurred, but for the most part they usually honor the estimates provided by independent repair companies.
A sudden, unexpected breakdown of your plumbing, air conditioning, or related system does not have to be paid out of your pocket if you have the right coverage in your homeowner’s insurance. While there is a deductible and limits to how much can be spent, you should be able to have the system repaired or replaced by your insurance company.