Does Home Insurance Cover Septic Tank Spills? - Empire Insurance Brokers Skip to main content

Does Home Insurance Cover Septic Tank Spills?

If your home has a septic tank, then you are aware that the system is going to create quite a few maintenance responsibilities over the years. After all, in the event of a septic tank problem, you are going to face a smelly, nasty, and expensive cleanup process.

In some situations, your homeowners will cover septic tank damage, backups, or spills. However, there are extremely specific scenarios during which your plan will offer protection. Therefore, if you have a septic tank, your home insurance agent needs to know about it. They will be sure to include the proper policy terms within your plan to cover such instances.

When does home insurance cover a septic tank?

You buy home insurance to cover unexpected, unavoidable damage to your property. Generally, all structures on the property will be covered, septic tanks included. Therefore, were they to sustain unexpected damage, then your homeowners insurance will offer you coverage for your losses.

If your septic tank were to sustain damage in one of the following accidents, then you might have coverage:

  • Vandalism
  • Lightning or fire damage
  • Pipe freezing
  • Explosions
  • Water damage related to plumbing problems
  • Falling objects, such as a large tree branch (if it occurred suddenly)

The similarity of all these hazards is that they must be unavoidable for your plan to cover them. In other words, they must occur from an unforeseen, undetectable, or unexpected problem.

When does home insurance not cover septic tank damage?

Because your septic tank might be buried, it might be unsusceptible to environmental hazards or vandalism. However, it is most at risk of issues like wear & tear, internal damage, clogs, pipe ruptures, overuse, or damage due to lack of maintenance. As a result, were you to have damage to your line simply because of a lack of maintenance, then you might have no coverage.

Additionally, your standard homeowners insurance is unlikely to cover any further damage that a malfunctioning sump pump were to do to the remainder of your property. To get such coverage, you will need to ask your agent to include a sewer/sump pump backup endorsement on your policy. This will ensure that any damage done by a malfunctioning system will have appropriate coverage under the terms of your policy.

What should you do if you have a septic tank leak or spill? Your first step should be to call a professional to clean up the problem and to repair the tank. You can include your home insurance agent in the process to determine if you have coverage. If so, they will help to lead the process of cleaning up the problem and making the repairs.