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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Water damage in my home

12/21/2021 (Permalink)

Severe weather is usually one of the first things that comes to mind when many think of water damage.

Yes, storms and flooding can cause catastrophic water damage, but they are often not the main culprits. Various items in your home can also be responsible for creating many situations that result in water damage.


Water damage was the third most common reason for a homeowners insurance claim between 2011 and 2015, and is something many homeowners will face with an average payout per claim of $8,861.

However, there are a differences between water damage and gradual water damage, which can impact insurance claims. Examples of gradual damage are situations where something has been happening over time, such as plumbing issues in the walls causing damage to walls, ceilings or floors, or water damage caused by cracks in the foundation. Unfortunately, most gradual water damage claims are not usually covered by homeowners insurance, while storm-related water damage usually is.

According to the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS), the leading causes of water damage are:

  • Plumbing supply system failures. This would involve frozen pipes that can burst due to a buildup in water pressure caused by freezing water or when the supply system building materials fail, resulting in a leaking or burst pipe. Per IBHS, plumbing supply system failures lead the pack for residential water damage losses, and an average claim will cost approximately $5,092 per incident after the deductible. It was also found that homes in the 16 to 40 years of age range made up a larger group of supply system material failure claims.

  • Plumbing drain system failures. This type of occurrence happens when a sewer drain backs up and overflows into a home or from the integrity of the materials used in the system. In their study, IBHS found that 52% of drain system failures were caused by sewer backups and 37% were related to material performance issues. It is interesting to note that they also found that the average drain system failure had higher loss claim dollar amounts in southern states than in northern states.

  • Toilet failures. Toilets are the second highest source of residential water damage loss after plumbing supply system failures, and this type of damage can be the result of faulty fill valves or clogged drain lines. Toilet failures on the first floor of a home had more severe homeowners insurance claims than those in basements or upper floors, according the study conducted by IBHS.

  • Water heater failures. If your water heater has reached its life expectancy, rust and corrosion will start to deteriorate the tank, which can create leaking or bursting issues. IBHS noted that 69% of all water heater failures resulted from a slow leak or sudden burst of water lines and, on average, cost $4,444 per incident following the deductible.

  • Washing machine failures. As a general rule, washing machine failures can be caused by supply hose failures, machines overflowing and drain line failures. Washing machines are one of the top 10 sources of residential water losses, and per IBHS, supply hose failures accounted for over half of all washing machine-related losses.

If your home has experienced any water damage, the team at SERVPRO of San Gabriel is always available 247 to help with cleanup and restoration and make it “Like it never even happened.”

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