Coming home to a dishwasher that has let go and caused a flood can be quite stressful. Not only does it create a chaotic mess, but it can also leave behind some serious damage. This leads many homeowners to wonder, does home insurance cover water damage from a dishwasher?
In most instances, water damage from a dishwasher, such as flooding, is covered by homeowners insurance. It is important to note, however, that negligence is not covered by most homeowners insurance policies.
Before experiencing this type of incident, it is important to look at your homeowners policy and determine what is and is not covered when it comes to water damage. Below we outline all you need to know if you are affected by water damage caused by your dishwasher.
Flood and water incidents: coverage explained
Homeowners insurance separates the types of water incidents that can occur at or inside your home. Due to this, it can be hard to understand which types of incidents will be covered and which will not. Below is a list of examples that are or are not covered by most homeowner insurance policies.
|Emergency plumbing issues||Sewer backup|
|Overflows from Appliances||Flooding (from natural disasters unless the policy is separately purchased)|
|Fire extinguisher damage||Source of the water damage (the actual dishwasher itself)|
|Hose damage||Damage from negligence|
Keeping this in mind, it is important to understand the differences between each of these covered vs. not covered scenarios. Below, we provide examples of each and how they pertain to your homeowners policy and your dishwasher flooding.
Covered vs. uncovered occurrences for dishwasher water damage
Not every incident is the same when it comes to homeowners insurance. That is why it is important to understand the issue and get a general sense of whether it is covered or not. We take each example and explain why each issue is unique below.
Emergency plumbing issues
If your dishwasher has emergency plumbing issues, it is likely not going to be covered by homeowners insurance. However, if the pipe that brings water directly to your dishwasher suddenly let’s go or bursts, then your homeowners policy will cover the damage associated with these emergency plumbing issues.
Imagine that you start your dishwasher and leave for the day or go outside to do some yard work. While you are out, the dishwasher malfunctions, and it overflows, causing water to flood your kitchen. If the damage is due to negligence of the appliance, it will not be covered, but if the damage is due to an event out of your control, homeowners insurance will cover the cost of the damage the flooding causes.
Fire extinguisher damage
If your dishwasher has an electrical malfunction and requires the use of a fire extinguisher, this can cause a large mess. Electrical damage can also cause the dishwasher to flood the home. If this is the case, your homeowner’s policy will cover the damage that occurs to the home but not the appliance itself.
Sewer or dishwasher backups
If your dishwasher becomes so clogged that it begins to back up out of your sink and flood your home, this may not be covered. In general, homeowners policies do not cover a sewer or drain backup. This type of issue is usually covered under an additional policy. If you did not purchase this policy, it is important to regularly check your drains for blockage to prevent this type of issue.
If a flood occurs and then damages your dishwasher, causing it to cause further damage later on, it will not be covered under a basic homeowners insurance policy. In order to have coverage for this scenario, the homeowner should purchase separate flood insurance, especially if they live in a flood zone.
Source of water damage
In the unfortunate event that your dishwasher does let go and is ruined in the process, it is important to understand that your homeowner’s insurance will not replace or repair the dishwasher. Appliances are not covered under general homeowners insurance policies. If you want them to be covered, you must purchase separate, additional insurance.
Damage from negligence
If you do not properly maintain and care for your dishwasher or notice a problem but neglect to fix it, then this may be considered damage from negligence under your homeowner’s policy. When damage occurs from gross negligence, insurance companies will not cover the cost of fixing the home or the appliance.
How do I check to see if dishwasher flooding is covered?
The best way to check to see if your current homeowners policy covers a dishwasher flooding incident is to contact your insurance agent. They will be able to walk you through your coverage and each type of instance that would warrant a claim and which ones would not.
Mold coverage after a water incident
After you suffer a dishwasher flooding incident and the initial clean-up has occurred, you may begin thinking about the mold that may appear in or around your home from the water damage. Most insurance policies do not cover mold at all.
The only typical exception is if it was caused directly by a sudden or accidental incident. The burden of proof falls on the homeowner and the insurance agent. It is important to keep all documentation after a flooding event to support the claim for mold in the future. These documents should include:
- Originally filed a claim to insurance regarding water damage
- Receipts from restoration and mitigation of water damage
- The initial assessment from the insurance agency regarding water damage
- The initial assessment from the contractor regarding water damage
This documentation will further assist you in obtaining compensation for any mold that may occur after a flooding event occurs from your dishwasher or any other covered incident.
Breathe easy, you’re covered
Most homeowners are often relieved to know that they will likely be covered in the case of a dishwasher flooding incident. This relieves ample stress and provides a sense of security. Just be sure to properly maintain your drains, and the dishwasher itself to continue to keep the coverage for accidental flooding.
Will this coverage be absolute?
Well, no. Your insurance company will only cover the damage if it is sudden and accidental. When your insurance company finds out that your dishwasher is old, the chances of filing a successful claim will be reduced. On top of that, if the insurance company finds you to be negligent, your insurance company won’t cover the damage.
When will I be considered negligent?
You must notify your insurance company as soon as you have noticed the water damage in your property. If you’re aware of the signs of water damage near your dishwasher, you must conduct due diligence to verify if there is a leak.
If my claim is denied, can it be reconsidered?
Yes. However, you will need to show proof that you have exercised due diligence. You can show them documents regarding the routine checkup done on your property. In addition to this, you can show proof that your appliances are well-maintained. You can even show the warranty card of your dishwasher if the warranty hasn’t expired yet.
Top signs of water damage from the dishwasher
In order to prevent being labeled as negligent, you need to be wary of the signs of water damage on your property. If you suspect that your dishwasher is leaking, you should inspect the surface near your dishwasher and look for common signs of water damage.
If you notice discoloration on the walls near your dishwasher, there is an increased chance that there is a leak near the area.
If you notice that there is a musty smell that lingers around your home, it is likely that there are molds that have formed due to the presence of stagnant water in the area.
This is probably the most obvious sign of water damage. If you find a flooded area near your dishwasher, it is because there is a leak in the area.