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Water Damage: Covered or not?

Rivers that burst their banks – not unheard of in January – water main breaks, sewer back-up, torrential rains that seep through roofs and windows, an overflowing bathtub … water damage can be a real headache. Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) has therefore developed a new interactive tool to help consumers see things more clearly.

Whether caused by climate change, outdated infrastructure, poor building maintenance or domestic accidents, water damage has been a real scourge over the past 10 years or so. In fact, water damage accounts for 50% of the total cost of claims paid out by insurers in Alberta each year, and the trend is rising.

While some damage may be inevitable, we want to remind consumers they can help reduce claims, thanks to a few prevention measures. For example, making sure to change their water heater every 10 years; checking and replacing washing machine and dishwasher hoses; not leaving the house while the washing machine and dishwasher are on; asking a friend or neighbour to check that everything is OK if they’re away from home for more than 7 days (especially in winter); leaving the heat on in the winter; removing snow and ice from windows and eaves troughs, etc.

What about vehicles?
When it comes to vehicles, for example, water damage is covered under an auto insurance policy, provided policyholders chose “Coverage against perils other than collision or upset” or “All Perils” coverage.


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