Am I covered if water backs-up through my sewer or drain?

Nearly all property forms, including homeowners policies, exclude or restrict water damage caused by the backup of sewers or drains. The provisions vary from company to company but usually read like this:

Section I – Property Exclusions

“Water damage is exluded if caused by water or water-borne material which backs up through sewers or drains or which overflows or is discharged from a sump, sump pump or related equipment.

This exclusion is talking about “overflows” of water from sewers (like out of toilet bowl) and “backups” from drains (like floor drains and sinks). The source of the water or sewage may be “off premises” from a plugged public sewer system or caused by water inside the home that is left on or stuck on which overwhelms a drain system that is plugged or restricted.

Note: Coverage for sewer or drain water backup can be added by endorsement for a small additional premium.