Is Sewer Backflow Covered By Home Insurance

With erratic weather conditions in Canada, it’s not unusual for homeowners to find their lower basements clogged with sewer water and find out that they need a Septic Tank Drainfield Repair.

Unless you have a sewer backflow preventer in place, be prepared to face the mess. After all, cleaning sewer waste calls for something more than a bucket and a mop. You must hire seasoned professionals to get your home in the right condition.

Having sewer backup insurance as a part of your property coverage can bail you out in these situations.

If your policy lacks this provision, make sure to reach out to the insurance experts at Surex. Visit to check out the policies that offer this provision.

What is a sewer backup?

Severe rainfall and floods often cause the main sewer lines in your city to flow in the reverse direction.

As a result, the filthy sewage makes its way through your drain pipe right into your basement. Homes without a sewer backflow preventer are even more susceptible to these issues. Simply defined, the wastewater from the main drain of your city would mess up your home. A blockage in your sewage or plumbing systems that needs drain cleaning can also lead to a sewer backup.

Sewer backup has turned out to be a nightmare for many Canadian households. With significant downpours and floods affecting many parts of the country, it would be wise to have a backflow preventer sewer in place. Also, households need to include sewer backflow in their property insurance policies.

After all, you wouldn’t like to wake up in the morning to find yourself amidst a filthy mess. The wastewater would damage your furniture and personal belongings. Besides, the cleanup process would involve a Herculean effort. Ultimately, uninsured households would have to fork out a large chunk of money to hire professional cleaners.

Does your home insurance cover sewer backups?

Basic home insurance policies do not have the provision for sewer backups. Neither does this type of damage come under the ambit of floodwater damage. Therefore, you need to get an additional package on consulting the insurance experts at an insurance brokerage. Depending on the risk profile of your property based on demographics, the professionals will recommend the right package.

Moreover, sewer backup doesn’t fall under the category of general water damage on your property. On the other hand, flood damage might occur due to snow melting, spring run-off, or overflowing streams, lakes, and rivers. When it comes to sewer backup, the damage is explicitly different. Therefore, you need a special provision or rider to cover this damage and the costs of the required water damage restoration.

Wastewater typically gets into your basement through leaks, seepages, and cracks. Property insurers do not cover such damage since the homeowners would be responsible for fixing these flaws as a part of their regular property maintenance. This explains why experts recommend investing in a sewer gas backflow preventer, besides having adequate coverage.

What is sewer backup coverage?

A sewer backup coverage is an add-on that homeowners can add to their tenant, condo, or home insurance policy. This policy covers the damages to your property resulting from the backing up of sewer systems.

Most property insurance schemes lack the provision for water damage and sewer backup. Unless you have this benefit, your insurer won’t cover any damage caused by sewage water reversing into your property. So, if your home is close to a ravine or river, or any low-lying area, it would be wise to have sewer backup coverage.

Insurance experts examine the following aspects while determining the need for the add-on package.

  • The population density in relation to the sewer line size.
  • How frequently the locality experiences severe weather conditions?
  • Historical reports regarding the number of incidents in the locality.
  • The relative elevation of your property compared to the sea level.

If you are unsure whether you should install a sewer backflow preventer or get an add-on package, consult the experts at your local insurance brokerage.

How can sewer backup coverage help you?

A sewer backup coverage is rather inexpensive, while water damage can cost you thousands of dollars. Getting your furniture or personal belongings replaced would involve significant investments.

The insurance experts will recommend different coverage limits based on your requirements. For instance, you might have your basement fully finished. In some Canadian homes, people store expensive items and furniture in the basements. Considering these priorities, it would be wise to get an additional policy. Otherwise, the repair expenses can burn a hole in your wallet.

Besides, you might be eligible for ‘Loss of Use’ coverage as a part of your sewer backup insurance policy. In case the incident renders your property unlivable, you can file a claim. In some cases, the water damage makes properties virtually uninhabitable, destroying the furniture. Under the loss of use coverage, you can benefit from additional living costs like hotel accommodations. You can even file a claim for the loss of your rent following sewer backup damage.

How does sewer backup insurance work?

A sewer backup insurance isn’t a standalone scheme; you need to purchase it in addition to your existing home insurance policy. Besides, home insurers do not provide this privilege under their basic plans. So, you need to get the benefits as an add-on endorsement to the current policy. Besides, this is also not a part of your water damage or flood damage policy. Therefore, you need to get this plan explicitly after consulting a reputed insurance expert.


Sewer backup in your basement can damage your appliances, insulation, flooring, and drywall. The cleaning and repair expenses can amount to as high as $30,000 under these conditions. On the other hand, you simply need to fork out a few hundred dollars each year to purchase your sewer backup insurance policy. This warrants your mental peace, besides securing you financially against water damage arising from sewer backups. So, if you live in a basement apartment or a finished basement, make sure to consult the experts at your local insurance brokerage and get a sewer backup insurance policy.