While homeowners insurance provides some amount of coverage for water damage caused by household plumbing and systems, it typically does not cover damage to service lines running underneath your property.
That means if one of your home’s service lines are damaged — be it cable lines or water piping or power lines — you’d be stuck footing the bill yourself for repairs if you only have a standard homeowners insurance policy.
Luckily, some insurance companies offer a service line coverage add-on, or endorsement, that you can add onto your homeowners policy for a small additional cost to protect different utility lines that connect to your home.
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What is service line coverage?
As the homeowner, you’re on the hook financially for subterranean lines or pipes running through your property. That means if your water pipes crack or your power line is severed, it’s your responsibility to fix it. Standard homeowners insurance typically won’t cover broken utility lines — but you can add a service line coverage endorsement to your policy for this type of protection.
Service line coverage will generally cover the costs of repairing or replacing utility lines, as well as the excavation and landscape restoration after necessary repairs are complete. When you file a claim, you may have to pay a deductible, but it’ll depend on the insurance company — Travelers, for example, doesn’t require a deductible for a service line claim.
What does service line coverage cover?
Here are some examples of damage that’s typically covered by service line coverage:
Wear and tear
Rust, corrosion, decay, and deterioration
Tree or root-caused damage
Vermin, insects, or rodent damage
Weight of equipment, vehicles, animals or people
Keep in mind that service line coverage endorsement isn’t the same across the board and will vary by your state and insurance company.
What types of service lines are covered?
Some service or utility lines typically covered by service line coverage include:
Natural gas pipes
What doesn’t service line coverage cover?
Here are some examples of what isn’t covered by service line coverage:
Water well related damage
Piping or wiring that isn’t connected and ready for use
Septic systems (a septic tank and the pipes that attach it to your home is usually automatically covered by a standard homeowners policy)
Wiring or piping that runs through a body of water
How much does service line coverage cost?
Service line coverage typically costs around $30 to $40 per year — only $2.50 to $3.33 per month — for between $10,000 to $20,000 in coverage on top of your homeowners policy. Service lines can cost anywhere from $1,000 to over $4,000 to repair or replace, so you may want to consider this endorsement if you're worried about paying out of pocket for the entire repair bill yourself. 
The exact cost of service line coverage depends on the specific insurance company, so be sure to check with your insurance company to see if they offer service line coverage, or reach out to an insurance expert at Policygenius who can help you reshop and find a company that offers this invaluable coverage endorsement.
Is service line coverage required?
No, you’re not required to add service line coverage to your homeowners policy. But doing so may save you from having to foot the bill if a service or utility line is damaged on your property.