What is Service Line Coverage?
Service line coverage is a property insurance endorsement that provides protection from an unforeseen loss resulting in a service line failure on your property. It covers the costs of expensive excavations and repairs of service lines on your property, including water and sewer pipes, natural gas lines, power lines, phone lines, cable lines, and more.
Why is Service Line Coverage Important?
As it turns out, homeowners are responsible for replacing or repairing any damage to service lines on their property, not the service provider. Moreover, your basic homeowners’ policy most likely does not offer any coverage for these damages.
Therefore, service line coverage is important because it covers you if any service lines on your property need to be repaired or replaced, making sure you don’t have to pay it all out of pocket for costly excavation and repairs.
What is a Service Line?
Service lines are utility lines or pipes that run through and underneath your property. Service lines connect your home to your provider’s supply for these services. Examples of service lines include the following:
- Power lines
- Naural Gas lines
- Phone and cable lines
- Water lines
- Waste disposal and sewer piping
- Fiber optics
- Private wells and septic systems
How Can a Service Line be Damaged?
Unfortunately, damage to service lines is not uncommon and can occur for a number of reasons, including:
- Mechanical breakdown
- Wear & Tear
- Rust or corrosion
- Tree or root invasion
- Ground freeze
- Freezing or frost heave
- Landscaping accidents
- An external force from excavation or aboveground weight
How Much Does a Service Line Repair Cost?
The cost of a service line repair depends greatly on the affected line and the extent of the repair; however, on average, it costs about $2,500. That being said, costs to repair or replace a service line can be much higher than this figure.
For example, sewer lines are usually very costly to repair or replace. Sewer line trenching usually costs $3,000 and $7,000 on average. Therefore, the cost to replace a service line depends greatly on the service line that is being replaced, the damage incurred, and the excavation costs.
What Does Service Line Insurance Cover?
Our service line insurance policy covers the following:
- Damage to your underground service line that is the result of a service line failure.
- Excavation of damaged service lines
- Repair or replacement costs for the damaged service line that is the result of a service line failure.
- Added cost to complete temporary repairs; or advance permanent repairs or replacements to your service line that is damaged.
- Your outdoor property that is a result of a service line failure or that is damaged during excavation of your covered service line during a service line failure.
- Additional living expenses and rental value.
Are You Covered if You Accidentally Damage the Service Line?
Service line insurance coverage also covers you if you accidentally damage your service line. This can occur if you are digging in the yard, doing landscaping, for example, and accidentally hit and damage a service line.
What is the Deductible for Service Line Coverage?
The deductible for service line coverage is $500 or more per event, depending on your insurance company.
How Does the Coverage Work?
For an additional premium, the homeowner can get protection from events that damage or destroy service lines that average $6,000 per event. The homeowner is responsible for the deductible and has coverage up to the limit they’ve purchased from their home insurer.
A tree root damages a service pipe on the homeowners’ property, causing a leak. The sewer line was 180′ long, and a backhoe was needed to excavate the area and replace the piping. The cost of excavation was $3,050, and the cost to replace the sewer line totaled $1,550.
- Loss: $4,600
- Deductible: $500
- Insurance Recoverable: $4,100
An underground power line providing electricity to the home significantly deteriorated over time, interrupting electrical service in the home. The underground power line had to be excavated and replaced because more damage to the line was discovered during repair work. The cost to replace the power line was $2,400, and the cost of excavation was $5,200.
- Loss: $7,600
- Deductible: $500
- Insurance Recoverable: $7,100
Should You Get Service Line Coverage?
The cost of only one service line repair can set you back thousands of dollars depending on the severity of the damage. Furthermore, damage to service lines is not uncommon and can happen for many reasons. Service line insurance coverage ensures that you don’t have to pay out of pocket for these high costs. Instead, your insurance will provide you with coverage.
All of this considered, insurance line coverage is well worth it, as it will protect you against any unexpected loss caused by damage to your service lines.