Septic Warranty Coverage and Costs (2024)
Septic systems provide homeowners with wastewater treatment off the municipal grid, but homeowners are responsible for maintenance needs. Septic system problems must be repaired quickly to maintain a home’s cleanliness and property value.
If your septic system or its components fail, a home warranty with septic system coverage could provide peace of mind and financial protection. We’ve reviewed the best home warranty companies to rank the top providers offering septic system coverage. We considered coverage limits, plan costs, and additional perks before making our recommendations.
There are over 2,500 people who bought a home warranty plan from one of the above companies in the last 30 days.
Septic System Warranty Coverage
Home warranties that cover septic systems are different from manufacturer’s warranties. New septic tanks typically include a one-year manufacturer’s warranty. This coverage applies only to the septic system and its components and covers certain failures that occur during that time. If the system breaks due to a manufacturing defect, the warranty will cover the cost of repair or replacement. Once the warranty ends, you’re responsible for the full costs of any septic system failures.
With a home warranty, you receive protection for most major home systems and appliances, no matter how old they are. Typically, home warranty coverage includes septic systems as an add-on for an extra cost. Septic warranties cover components that malfunction due to normal wear and tear. They may also cover the cost of pumping due to a blockage.
Different home warranty companies provide different septic system coverage options. Before purchasing a plan, make sure you know what is and isn’t covered. Septic warranty coverage may include the following parts:
- Aerobic pump
- Jet pump
- Septic tank
- Septic tank pumping
- Sewage ejector pump
- Sewer lines
However, some home warranty companies exclude the following septic issues and components from coverage:
- Additional access points beyond the main sewer line
- Damage caused by poor maintenance
- Ground-level cleanouts
- Insufficient capacity
- Leach beds
- Lift stations
- Overgrown tree roots
- Tile fields
Is a Septic Warranty Necessary?
With the proper attention and maintenance, your septic system should last 15–20 years, but an extremely well-maintained system may last up to 40 years.
This doesn’t mean that your septic tank will be immune to the occasional breakdown or malfunction. If the septic sewage ejector pump in your system fails or another component stops working, professional service is required and a septic system repair or replacement may be necessary.
While a septic warranty can provide coverage for your system, it lasts for a limited time and only protects your brand-new septic system. On the other hand, a home warranty covers septic system repairs and replacements due to wear and tear no matter the system’s age. The home warranty company will send a trusted technician to your home to make fixes promptly.
Septic coverage can also provide peace of mind to anyone new to septic system ownership. Mark Buskuhl, founder and CEO of Ninebird Properties, said that while every homeowner with a septic system can benefit from having home warranty coverage, “It may be especially beneficial for those who are not familiar with the maintenance and upkeep of these systems.” When you file a claim, your home warranty company will know the right licensed professional to call.
How Much Does Septic Coverage Cost?
To receive septic coverage, you’ll need a home warranty service contract with a septic system add-on. On average, a home warranty costs $45–$72 per month and comes with service call fees that range between $75 and $125. The cost of septic system add-ons varies between companies. Based on quotes we received from leading home warranty companies, you may pay anywhere from $4–$20 for add-on services. Our secret shopping process involved getting quotes online and through each company’s customer support team. We recommend getting quotes from a few companies to find coverage that fits your budget.
How To Find the Best Septic Warranty
To find the best septic system coverage, make sure you know what each plan includes and excludes.
- Choose the right type of plan: Most home warranty companies provide several plans to choose from, typically a systems plan, an appliances plan, and a combo plan. Since septic coverage is nearly always an add-on, choose a plan based on your budget and the other types of coverage needed. Additionally, check the fine print of the septic add-on to verify coverage for items such as the drain fields, pumps, and the septic tank.
- Check for coverage exclusions: Most home warranty companies offer sample contracts on their website. Look for any exclusions and limitations with each home warranty plan. Buskuhl recommends carefully reading the terms and conditions of any septic system coverage before purchasing, as there may be certain exclusions or limitations that could make the coverage less valuable. “For example,” Buskuhl said, “some plans may not cover damage caused by neglect or lack of maintenance.”
- Compare costs: Septic warranty coverage is usually listed as an add-on with home warranty companies. Compare the add-on price plus the plan price from at least three companies before making a final decision.
Septic System Maintenance Costs and Tips
With septic system home warranty coverage, the cost of repair and replacement is covered up to certain dollar amounts. These limits vary between companies but could range from $500–$2,000, depending on the provider.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that repairing or replacing a traditional septic system could cost between $5,000 and $15,000. Thus, septic system coverage may greatly reduce your repair bills, but it probably won’t cover the cost of replacing the whole system. Completing proper maintenance and having comprehensive septic system coverage will help you reduce out-of-pocket repair expenses.
The EPA offers the following tips for proper septic system maintenance:
- Avoid flushing anything other than toilet paper and human waste down your toilet.
- Don’t pour cooking oil or harsh chemicals down your kitchen or bathroom sinks. Also, limit the food waste deposited into the garbage disposal to prevent unwanted clogs and buildup.
- Have your septic system inspected every three years. This typically costs anywhere from $250 to $500, but it could save you money in the long run. Professional maintenance may also be necessary to maintain your home warranty coverage.
- You should also pump your septic tank every three to five years.
- Reduce your overall water consumption to improve septic tank operations. This could include installing high-efficiency appliances, showerheads, and washing machines.
The Best Home Warranty Companies for Septic Coverage
Based on our research, we’ve selected the top providers for septic coverage:
- Liberty Home Guard: Best Customer Ratings
- American Home Shield: Best for Comprehensive Coverage
- Select Home Warranty: Best Value
- First American Home Warranty: Best Appliance Coverage
Our team pulled sample quotes based on a 2,850-square-foot, single-family home in Atlanta. Your monthly premium may vary based on your home’s location, size, and type as well as your plan and add-on choices.
Liberty Home Guard: Best Customer Ratings
The septic add-on from Liberty Home Guard (LHG) covers mainline stoppages and clogs as long as there’s an accessible clear-out. LHG also includes an annual pumping service for your septic system, and you can purchase separate coverage for a sewage ejector pump. While reviewing the LHG sample contract, we learned that the company excludes coverage for all other septic system components.
LHG also includes comprehensive coverage for your home’s systems and appliances, with a generous $2,000 coverage cap and a 60-day workmanship guarantee for each completed repair. LHG is worth considering due to the benefits mentioned above, plus its offering of more than 30 unique add-on options.
Here are some key details about LHG’s septic coverage:
- Charges an additional $12.99 per month for septic coverage
- Offers a $2,000 coverage cap for septic mainline stoppage repairs
- Includes an annual pumping of your septic system
- Excludes coverage for other septic system components like septic tanks
- Septic sewage ejector pump can be added for an additional fee
Plans and Pricing
Liberty Home Guard offers homeowners three coverage plans. Appliance Guard covers home appliances, while Systems Guard covers almost all major systems. The company’s comprehensive plan is Total Home Guard, which bundles systems and appliance coverage.
When speaking with an LHG representative, we discovered that the service call fee is assigned to your policy based on your home’s size and type, your location, your plan selection, and add-on coverages. Expect to pay between $65 and $125 per filed claim.
LHG’s monthly pricing options are as follows:
- Appliance Guard: $49.99
- Systems Guard: $54.99
- Total Home Guard: $59.99
American Home Shield: Best for Comprehensive Coverage
American Home Shield (AHS) covers septic pumping and septic sewage ejector pump malfunctions as a single add-on. AHS provides peace of mind by offering generous coverage caps on covered items, including those with unknown preexisting conditions or damage from improper installation and repair. It also offers plan flexibility via three plans and three service call fees. AHS’s septic system coverage has a $500 coverage cap.
Here are some key details about AHS’s septic coverage:
- Charges $5 extra per month for septic system add-on coverage
- Offers a $5,000 coverage cap for nonseptic system plumbing coverage in the ShieldSilver, ShieldGold, and ShieldPlatinum plans
- Covers mainline stoppages that are accessible via an existing cleanout
- Covers damage due to insufficient maintenance, which most companies exclude
- Includes coverage for septic sewage ejector pumps and septic pumping, up to $500
Plans and Pricing
American Home Shield provides three coverage plans: ShieldSilver, ShieldGold, and ShieldPlatinum. The ShieldSilver plan covers major systems. The ShieldGold plan includes systems and major appliance coverage. The ShieldPlatinum plan covers appliances and systems and includes roof-leak repair. Plans include service fee options of $100 or $125. When we requested a sample quote, we learned that choosing a higher service fee lowers your monthly premium.
Here are AHS’s pricing options:
- ShieldSilver: $29.99–$39.99
- ShieldGold: $49.99–$59.99
- ShieldPlatinum: $79.99–$89.99
Select Home Warranty: Best Value
Select Home Warranty provides the best value for your septic system and home protection needs. Select covers multiple septic system components, such as jet pumps and septic tanks. Select’s coverage cap is limited to $400 for septic coverage and add-on options. However, the company includes roof-leak protection in each plan as a free add-on, plus it offers generous coverage caps for HVAC systems, which makes Select a suitable choice overall.
Here are some key details about Select’s septic coverage:
- Charges $5.83 per month for septic add-on coverage
- Offers a combined $400 coverage cap for septic system components such as aerobic pumps, sewage ejector pumps, jet pumps, and septic tanks
- Excludes septic pumping coverage, which every other provider in this list covers
Plans and Pricing
Select Home Warranty provides the Bronze Care, Gold Care, and Platinum Care plans for your home protection needs. Bronze Care includes systems coverage and Gold Care comes with appliance coverage. The Platinum Care plan bundles the Bronze Care and Gold Care plans into one comprehensive package. All of Select’s plans include its standard $75 service call fee.
Select’s plans come with the following monthly costs:
- Bronze Care: $44.42
- Gold Care: $44.42
- Platinum Care: $47.75
First American Home Warranty: Best Appliance Coverage
First American Home Warranty offers both septic system pumping and component coverage as a single add-on. However, its total coverage cap for septic systems is limited to $500, similar to American Home Shield and lower than Liberty Home Guard.
Here are some key highlights of First American’s septic coverage:
- Offers septic system add-on coverage for $9 extra per month
- Extends a $500 coverage cap for septic system components such as jet pumps, aerobic pumps, sewage ejector pumps, and septic tank lines
- Includes a septic tank pumping service once per contract term
Plans and Pricing
First American provides three plans: the Starter Plan, Essential Plan, and Premium Plan. It offers $75, $100, and $125 service call fees, which you’ll pay each time you file a new claim. The Starter and Essential plans cover a mix of major systems and appliances, and the Premium Plan increases coverage caps for appliances and select systems. The provider also includes its First American Advantage upgrade within the Essential and Premium Plans. This upgrade covers miscellaneous repair fees that a standard home warranty won’t take care of.
First American’s coverage prices are listed below:
- Starter Plan: $47.00–$62.00
- Essential Plan: $57.00–$72.00
- Premium Plan: $72.00–$87.00
If you have a septic system, consider investing in a home warranty with septic coverage. You’ll pay less for repairs and replacements if your system wears out, and your home warranty company will see that a technician takes care of them promptly. We recommend getting quotes from multiple providers to compare pricing and select the plan that best fits your budget.
FAQ About Septic Warranties
What should I do if I suspect a septic problem?
If you notice slow-draining sinks or sewage backing up in the toilet or tub, there may be an issue with your septic system. Those with a home warranty should contact their home warranty company to file a claim. The provider should send a contractor to diagnose the problem within 48 hours of receiving your claim.
In addition to a septic system, what else does a home warranty cover?
A home warranty covers major systems and appliances like your air conditioning, refrigerator, electrical, and plumbing. Unlike homeowners insurance, a home warranty covers items that break down due to normal wear and tear and doesn’t cover damage to your home from natural disasters, fire, or theft.
How can I protect my septic system?
One of the most effective ways to prevent expensive damage to your septic system is by practicing proper maintenance. Routinely inspect your pump at least once every three years, use water efficiently, and dispose of waste properly.
Does homeowners insurance cover septic systems?
Yes, homeowner’s insurance usually covers all systems and structures on a property, including septic systems. However, this insurance only covers damage from certain events like natural disasters, not regular wear and tear.
Our Rating Methodology
We back up our home warranty ratings and recommendations with a detailed rating methodology to score each provider objectively. We conduct research by speaking with company representatives, requesting quotes, analyzing sample contracts, and conducting focus groups and consumer surveys.
We score each provider against our review standards, which include four comparison categories: coverage, value, trust and transparency, and availability and service. We rate each provider across 31 factors within these categories. Each factor is assigned a point value based on its importance to a homeowner, totaling 100 points. We then convert the final scores to a 5-star rating.
Here’s a breakdown of our weighted factors:
- Coverage (40%): We scored coverage based on included home systems and appliances, add-on options, and unique benefits. We also compared coverage caps and policy exclusions.
- Additional coverage items
- Annual coverage cap
- Home systems coverage
- Major appliances coverage
- Obstructed wall coverage cap
- Value (30%): We compared the coverage level received to monthly pricing to determine plan value. We considered premium pricing, service fees, and flexibility in customizing plan costs.
- Average monthly cost
- Cost flexibility
- Lowest service fee
- Trust and Transparency (16%): We evaluated each company’s reputation using the Better Business Bureau ratings and customer reviews on third-party review sites. We read through plan change policies, workmanship protections, and sample contract availability.
- Brand reputation
- Policy change flexibility
- Sample contract availability
- Workmanship guarantee length
- Availability and Service (14%): We award higher scores for faster claim processing and response times. We also considered service technician policies, including options to choose your technician.
- Claims process
- Guaranteed response time
- Service flexibility
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