Sewer Backups Caused By Tree Roots: Is That Covered in Home Insurance

Most home insurance policies do not cover tree root damage as the risks outlined are usually sudden and accidental. They grow over time in the sewer line without notice. You’ll start to notice water swirl on your sink slowly, then eventually seep down the drain. On the other hand, flashing the toilet will result in messy overflows.

These are good indicators of clogged sewers, and if there’s a tree between your home and streets, chances are its roots are causing the sewer backups. How does tree root infiltrate your sewer line? Plus, will your home insurance cover water repairs and damage? Read on to debunk all these issues.

Sewer Backups Caused By Tree Roots Is That Covered in Home Insurance

Tree Root Infiltrating the Drain Line

The roots are always looking for nutrient-rich and moist soil where they can thrive in. Discharge from your home is suitable for these tree roots to grow there, especially if your sewer lines have fractures and joints that are not airtight. The vapor and fluids from the sewer line will attract roots from the nearby areas.

It can often start as a tendril peeping through a pipe and slowly turn into a roots labyrinth. The roots can, thereby, block the flow of water or, worse, filter the water, catching all the debris. This is how sewer lines get blocked.

Tree Roots Are Not Covered in Home Insurance

Home insurance covers risks around your home that are sudden and accidental, and damages caused by tree roots are neither. Therefore, the damages caused by the infiltration of tree roots may not be covered by home insurance. Moreover, the insurance company may not cover any associated water damage like water backing up.

Most insurers don’t have that kind of detailed coverage in their limitations. You’ll have to deal with the damages and repairs alone. However, other insurance companies can give you the option of a rider for sewer line coverage. The extra rider can shield homeowners from the expenses of the sewer line itself.

Preventing Tree Roots Infiltrations

Prevention is better than dealing with the aftermath. Getting at the root cause of the problem is, therefore, important. Here are four tips that’ll help you prevent tree root infiltration:

  • Plant trees away from your sewer line; it’s as simple as that, avoid planting trees 10 yards from your drainage line. You can move any young tree that can pose a challenge later on away from the drainage line.
  • Inspect the slow drain right away; once you start noticing that your drainage swirls slower than usual, it’s imperative to have your sewer lines checked to determine any underlying problem. It can either be a P-trap or buildup due to debris. Whichever the case, you can easily fix them. The problem can be dire, like tree root infiltration; knowing beforehand can help limit further damage.
  • Killing the root structure; if there are chances of tree root infiltration, it’s wise to deal with them earlier using products that can kill the root structure to clear out the sewer lines.
  • Ensure a plumber clears out the drainage system; getting a plumber to work on your drainage system earlier on when the problem is not massive is essential. They are better positioned to auger out roots before they completely block your drainage system.


  • FAQ on Water Damage

    How Can You Cleanup Water Damage on Your Own?

    Cleaning up water damage can be a difficult and time-consuming task. However, there are some things that you can do to clean up the damage and prevent further damage from occurring. The first thing that you need to do is to remove any wet items from the area. This includes carpeting, furniture, draperies, and anything else that is wet. Once you have removed these items, you need to dry the area as much as possible. You can use a wet/dry vacuum to remove the water from the area. You can also use fans to help dry the area. Once the area is dry, you need to disinfect it. This can be done by using a bleach solution or a disinfectant. Once the area is dry and disinfected, you need to repair any damage that has been done. This includes any holes in the walls or ceilings. You also need to repair any damaged flooring. If you have any questions about how to cleanup water damage, you should contact a professional. They will be able to give you more information and help you repair the damage.

    How fast does mold grow after a water leak?

    Under the right conditions, mold can grow within 24-48 hours. Factors that contribue to mold growth include the temperature of the area impacted by water damage and the types of materials that are saturated.

    What happens if you leave water damage?

    Leaving water damage untreated will cause it to spread, potentially damaging other areas of your home. Additionally, long-term exposure to water can lead to the growth of mold and mildew, which can cause serious health problems.

    What is the best way to dry out water damage?

    The first step is to remove the water source. If the water is coming from a leaky pipe, then you will need to fix the pipe. If the water is coming from a flood, then you will need to wait for the water to recede. Once the water source has been removed, you will need to dry out the area. This can be done with a wet/dry vacuum or by using fans and dehumidifiers. You will also need to remove any wet items from the area, such as carpeting, furniture, or clothing.

    How can you tell if a wall or ceiling has water damage

    You can tell if a wall or ceiling has water damage if it is sagging, discolored, or has water stains. A professional restoration contractor can use a moisture meter or infrared camera to detect wet spots and hidden water damage.