When it comes to safeguarding your home, understanding the intricacies of insurance is crucial. One aspect you may have come across is ‘escape of water insurance’. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about escape of water insurance. From its definition to what it covers and the essential steps to take when you need to make a claim, we’ve got you covered. So, if you’re seeking answers to common questions about escape of water insurance, you’re in the right place. Let’s dive in!

What does escape of water mean in home insurance terms?

First things first, let’s demystify the term “escape of water.” In the realm of home insurance, this phrase refers to situations where water suddenly and unintentionally leaks or bursts from its normal confines within your home. Such incidents may arise from issues like deteriorated pipe joints and valves or leaks originating from heating systems or faulty household appliances.

Insurers will accept liability for escape of water claims and pay the cost of repairing or replacing the damaged building and contents. Your insurance policy will also cover the additional expenses if your home cannot be lived in as a result of the damage, while repairs are underway.

Common causes of escape of water insurance claims

Insurers process £8m per day for home insurance claims and of that figure, escape of water claims are the most common type of home insurance claim, accounting for almost a third of all claims. 

Escape of water isn’t only the leading cause of home insurance claims, it’s also one of the most expensive. According to ABI (The Association of British Insurers), insurers pay out £1.8m for escape of water claims every day. 

Within that are a number of different types of claims including; 

1. Burst Pipes: Usually caused by freezing weather or ageing plumbing.

2. Faulty Electrical Appliances: Appliances like washing machines or dishwashers may develop leaks.

3. Roof Damage: Damaged or missing roof tiles can allow rainwater to enter your home.

4. Blocked Drains: Obstructed drains can lead to water backing up and causing damage from an overflow.

5. Miscellaneous Leaks: This category includes issues such as leaking taps, water tanks, central heating systems, radiators, or blockages in toilets.

What does escape of water insurance cover?

Escape of water insurance is designed to cover a range of damages caused by unintentional water leaks or bursts within your home. Here’s a breakdown of what escape of water insurance typically covers:

  • Damage to Building Structures: This includes repairs to the physical structure of your home, such as walls, ceilings, floors, and fixtures.
  • Fixing Faulty Plumbing: If a sudden and accidental incident causes damage to your plumbing system, escape of water insurance may cover the cost of repairs.
  • Replacing Damaged Pipes: The policy can include the replacement of pipes that have burst or leaked, provided the damage is due to an insured event.
  • Repairing Roofs: In cases where a damaged roof allows rainwater to enter your home, escape of water insurance can help cover the costs of fixing the roof and any damage caused by the water.
  • Contents Damage: If your personal belongings are damaged due to an escape of water event, the policy can cover the repair or replacement of items such as furniture, electronics, and other possessions.
  • Mould Remediation: When water damage leads to mould growth, escape of water insurance may assist with the costs of mould removal and treatment.

It’s essential to review your specific insurance policy to understand the exact coverage it provides. Policies can vary, so ensure you’re aware of any limitations, exclusions, and excess amounts associated with your escape of water cover.

Is escape of water covered by buildings or contents insurance?

Escape of water insurance can apply to both your buildings and contents coverage, but it’s important to distinguish between the two:

Buildings Insurance: This aspect of your policy typically covers damage to the structure of your home, including fixtures and fittings. So, if a burst pipe damages your walls or ceilings, buildings insurance may come into play.

Contents Insurance: On the other hand, contents insurance protects your personal belongings within your home. If your possessions suffer damage due to an escape of water incident, contents insurance may cover the cost of repair or replacement.

What does escape of water excess mean?

A policy excess is an amount you have to pay towards making a claim. The amount of the excess should be agreed upon when you take out your policy, it must be clear in the policy documents. If your insurer offers to settle a claim at £7,000 and your excess is £250 the final settlement will be £6,750. 

You pay the excess every time you make a claim. Some insurers will have different excess amounts under a single policy, for example, a home insurance policy might have a £250 excess for accidental damage but a £1,000 excess for subsidence.

Is escape of water the same as flooding?

While both escape of water and flooding involve water damage, they are distinct in terms of their causes. Flooding happens when the water comes into your house from an external source, like an overflowing river or a burst water main. Escape of water happens when the water comes from inside your house or that of a neighbour. Home insurance policies may treat these two types of damage separately, so it’s essential to be clear about your coverage.

Making an escape of water insurance claim

When water escapes suddenly, the damage can be devastating, so you must let your insurer know as soon as possible and give them as much information as you can. Here is a list of the key steps for making a successful escape of water insurance claim;

1. Act Swiftly: As soon as you discover an escape of water, take immediate action to mitigate the damage. Turn off the water source if possible and try to contain the spread of water.

2. Contact Your Insurer: Get in touch with your insurance company to report the incident. Provide all the necessary details and follow their guidance.

3. Document the Damage: Take photos or videos of the affected areas and any damaged belongings. This will be valuable evidence during the claims process.

4. Temporary Repairs: You may need to make temporary repairs to prevent further damage. Keep any receipts and records of these repairs for reimbursement.

5. Damage Assessment: Your insurer will assess the damage and determine the coverage. Be prepared to share any evidence you’ve collected.

6. Claim Settlement: If your claim is approved, your insurer will guide you through the settlement process. This may involve arranging repairs or replacements.

Making an escape of water insurance claim can be a stressful experience, but acting promptly and maintaining open communication with your insurer will help ensure a smoother process.

In summary, escape of water insurance offers valuable protection against a range of damages caused by water leaks or bursts within your home. This coverage can help you recover from unexpected water-related incidents with peace of mind.

What is the insurance claims process if I discover an escape of water?

Dealing with the aftermath of a burst water pipe or a leak can be a daunting and emotionally taxing experience, often resulting in substantial financial burdens. 

This is why we have created an escape of water claim guide which simplifies some of the complexities of making an escape of water claim and gives you step-by-step information on how your home insurance claim should move through the claims process with your insurer.

Your home is likely your most valuable asset, and a water leak in your home can result in extensive damage, not all of which may be immediately visible. The decisions you make during the insurance claim process will directly impact your home’s restoration and the settlement you’re entitled to.

Without a professional Loss Assessor on your side, you may have to prepare, manage, and negotiate a complicated insurance claim alone. Should you choose to appoint a Professional Loss Assessor like Morgan Clark, you don’t have to face this challenge alone. We’re ready to step in immediately and take charge of the entire repair process, from drying and sanitation to refurbishment.

Our team of experienced and qualified Loss Assessors are dedicated to reducing the time and effort you spend on your insurance claim while safeguarding your best interests. Our ultimate goal is to help you return to your home as quickly as possible and ensure you receive the full settlement you rightfully deserve.
If you’re interested in learning more about how Morgan Clark can help you, please don’t hesitate to call us on 0808 304 4190 for a no-obligation conversation with an insurance claim expert or visit our homeowners’ insurance claims page for more information.

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