Water Damage Stats

Home / Water Damage Stats
It began with a plumbing leak
Imagine returning home to find your cars encased in several inches of ice! This picture shows what happened to one homeowner. His garage and two autos, including an expensive sports car, were completely encapsulated in solid ice after a water pipe froze and burst. The weight of the ice even caused two of the tires on the Porsche to burst! Now that’s cold.

Had this homeowner had a Leak Defense System, they would have been notified of this potential problem and he’d still be driving his Porsche.

The average home loses 14% of its water to leaks.

In an average residence, 22 gallons of water are lost to leakage each day, and the most common culprits are leaking toilets or dripping faucets. This daily leakage volume is about equal to the amount of drinking water a family of 3 needs for 2 full weeks!

Here are some startling facts:
Property damage resulting from water damage due to plumbing failures and freezing pipes is the second most common cause of homeowner loss.
Water caused $9.1 billion in annual homeowner policy property losses annually from 2007 to 2009 – approximately 23 percent of all homeowner property losses.
“Water damage claims have been growing faster than other components of homeowners insurance.”   —  American Insurance Association

In the U.S., water damage is the second most frequently filed insurance claim and has accounted for more than $5 billion of reported* claims each year from 1999 to 2003.
*These figures do not include homeowner deductibles or unreported losses.

Up to 93% of the cost of water damage could have been prevented or minimized if an automatic water leak detection and shut-off system had been present in the homes, according to an ACE Private Risk Services study of damage sustained by affluent homeowners.

ACE Private Risk Services estimates the average cost of repairs for this damage could exceed $20,000, compared to only $6,000 for damage related to roof leaks and other causes of loss that the system would not have prevented.

“Water damage claims typically came to “no more than $600” in the 1970s,” recalls James Guyan at Augusta Mutual. Today, he says, “We have found that these losses range from $2,000 to $30,000 with a mean of most likely around $5,000.”

Water-damage claims, most from leaky or burst pipes, are the primary cause of rising property-insurance costs. According to the North County Times story, in California, water damage represented 32% of all claims in 2001, up from 24% in 1997.

High humidity conditions that exist after a water loss create the perfect environment for mold growth.

Leaks can be slow and gradual, taking years to detect until significant property damage occurs, or there can be large leaks that quickly produce a variety of damaging results.