Does Insurance Cover Plumbing Leaks in Sydney?
Most insurance policies in Sydney tend to be quite tricky on their terms. Thus, it’s necessary to know more about what an insurer covers and what they don’t, especially with respect to damages in your home.
Plumbing systems are prone to several problems. As a homeowner in Sydney, you’ve most likely dealt with plumbing leaks before. Sometimes they are difficult to detect. Read the article How to Easily Detect Plumbing Leakage In Your Home for more information. Plumbing leaks in Sydney are not automatically covered by all insurers, just like with everything else concerning insurance.
Insurance policies from different insurers are often different. Also, different homes are built differently. Thus, some inclusions in your policy may be excluded from another homeowner’s policy.
To get the best deal, always read through the policy to know what it includes and excludes. Go through its fine print keenly. You can find the print on the product disclosure.
You can also talk with your home insurer for details about what they cover in your property and what they don’t. It’s best knowing everything about your policy when you’re not in need such that you can easily adjust the policy for the sake of the future.
If there’s something you want covered but the insurer excludes it in their policy, then you’d rather look for another provider. With that said, here’s what most insurers cover and what they don’t.
What Do Insurers Cover And What Don’t They Cover?
Sometimes, plumbing leakages may be covered and at other times, they may not be covered. So what does that really mean? Well, here’s what you need to know.
Most policies argue that if a leakage would have been avoided by maintaining the plumbing regularly, then chances of it being covered are slim.
Some policies cover the process of finding a leakage and repairing any damage that results from the leaking water. However, they don’t cover the actual cost of fixing the leak. Other policies may set limits on the maximum amount they can pay for finding a leak.
Seepage or gradual leaks
Most policies don’t cover seepage and gradual leaks, especially those that result from a faulty shower base or recess. The exclusion also includes all the wet areas that may not have been well maintained, especially the waterproof membrane or seals.
Some insurers may cover gradual leakage in case it’s clear than you could never have known that the leak existed. Such coverage includes leaks that occur in areas beneath the home or within the wall cavity.
In case water leaks occur in the basement and walls due to a poorly-maintained membrane, then they’ll probably not get covered. It’s necessary to do routine inspection on waterproof areas. Repairs should be carried out whenever necessary. Damp spots should be assessed soonest possible.
In case your home develops structural damage as a result of water accumulation due to blocked drains or gutters, then the damage is generally excluded from insurance cover.
Most insurers don’t cover plumbing leaks caused by roots.
It’s important to check your roof regularly for issues such as overflowing gutters, blocked gutters, blocked downpipes, and loose tiles especially after hail storms. Doing so ensures your home will be covered for water damage resulting from the roofing. However, insurers don’t cover damages that are avoidable by regular roof maintenance.
Signs of Plumbing Leaks
While it’s impossible to see your entire plumbing system, it’s possible to see some signs that will tell you something is wrong with your plumbing. Indicators of leakage in your plumbing include:
Mould growth in any part of your home:
- Mould growth or discoloration on the ceiling, floor, and walls especially in areas close to wet sections.
- Mouldy or musty smells and damp carpets
Laundry room leaks:
- Discolored, cracked, or warped laundry cabinetry
- Check the hoses and hose connections to your washing machines for damage or cracks
- Check for a water pool beneath the laundry tub or washing machine
- Discolored, cracked, or warped bathroom cabinetry
- Water pools beneath the vanity or around your toilet
- Discolored or warped walls, bench tops, or flooring
Leaks within the kitchen:
- Discolored or warped flooring, walls, or bench tops
- Discolored, warped, or cracked kitchen cabinetry
- A water pool near or under the fridge or dishwasher
Leaks around the garden:
- Cracking or movement on paved areas, paths, retaining walls, and noticing unusual holes
- Constant puddles or wet patches even when it has not rained
- Excess water around or beneath the water heating system (the hot water storage system may release water through its pressure-relieving valve mechanism as a normal daily operation).
- Bushes or trees growing faster than the surrounding plants
The hoses used in the bathroom and kitchen are often flexible and contribute to most water leakage problems. Thus, ensure they’re checked for bulging, cracks, and damages regularly.
How can I tell that my plumbing is leaking?
It’s actually possible to test whether your main water pipes are leaking or not. There’s an extremely easy test for doing this.
The test is best done when leaving your home or when you’re not going to use water from the pipes for some hours. Here’s how to do the test:
- First, turn off each and every water valve and tap outside and within your home.
- Upon turning all the taps off, read and note down the current water meter reading. The reading can be in the form of numbers or dials.
- Avoid turning on any tap for several hours. It’ll be best to avoid using the piped water for as long as possible.
- Go back to your water meter and take a second meter reading. Note it down somewhere.
Now compare the second meter reading with the first one. In case there’s a difference, then you probably have a leak. Contact your plumber soonest possible to come and locate the leak and do the necessary repairs.
It’s advisable to have the necessary repairs done soonest possible to prevent more damage and water loss that can lead to high water bills.
The best way to prevent water leakage in Sydney in any plumbing system is maintenance. Although regular maintenance might not solve all water leaks, it’ll prevent many issues from occurring.
Regular maintenance will also uncover other problems before they lead to more damage. We advocate for regular checkup and maintenance on your plumbing system.
Moreover, our professional plumbers can assist you with the best plumbing maintenance plan that is specially customized for your plumbing system. Simply contact us today for the best plumbing solutions.
You may be interested in reading about the main causes of pipe leaks in most Sydney homes.