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Does homeowners insurance cover furnace?

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover a Furnace?

Homeowners insurance is designed to protect your home and personal property from various risks and perils. Understanding what is covered under your policy is crucial, especially when it comes to major home systems like your furnace. This guide will delve into the specifics of whether homeowners insurance covers a furnace, the conditions under which it might be covered, and what you can do to ensure your home’s heating system is protected.

What Homeowners Insurance Typically Covers

Dwelling Coverage

  • Structural Damage: Homeowners insurance generally covers the structure of your home, including the furnace, if it is damaged by a covered peril. Covered perils usually include fire, lightning, hail, windstorms, and other natural disasters.

Personal Property Coverage

  • Contents of the Home: This coverage applies to personal belongings within your home, which might include portable heating equipment but not typically the furnace itself, as it is considered part of the dwelling structure.

Covered Perils and Furnace Damage

Common Covered Perils

Fire and Lightning

  • Direct Damage: If your furnace is damaged or destroyed by a fire or lightning strike, your homeowners insurance policy will likely cover the repair or replacement costs.

Hail and Windstorms

  • External Damage: Damage caused by hail or windstorms might also be covered if the external force directly impacts the furnace or the structure housing it.

Plumbing and Electrical Malfunctions

  • Secondary Damage: Some policies cover damage to the furnace if it results from plumbing or electrical issues, such as a burst pipe causing water damage or an electrical surge damaging the furnace’s components.

Exclusions and Limitations

Wear and Tear

Normal Wear and Tear

  • Maintenance Issues: Homeowners insurance does not cover damage due to normal wear and tear, lack of maintenance, or age-related issues. Furnaces have a lifespan, and issues arising from old age or neglect are not covered.

Mechanical Breakdown

Mechanical and Operational Failures

  • System Failures: Policies typically exclude coverage for mechanical breakdowns or operational failures that are not linked to a covered peril. This means if your furnace stops working due to internal malfunctions, repairs or replacement are generally not covered.

Additional Coverage Options

Home Warranty Plans

Supplementary Protection

  • Home Warranties: Consider purchasing a home warranty plan, which covers the repair or replacement of major home systems and appliances, including your furnace, due to mechanical failures or wear and tear.

Endorsements and Riders

Policy Add-Ons

  • Specific Endorsements: You can add endorsements or riders to your homeowners insurance policy to cover specific risks not included in standard coverage. For example, you might add equipment breakdown coverage to protect against mechanical failures.

Preventive Measures

Regular Maintenance

Scheduled Inspections

  • Professional Servicing: Regular maintenance and inspections by a professional can extend the life of your furnace and prevent unexpected breakdowns. Keep records of all maintenance activities as they can be useful if you need to file a claim.

Upgrading Systems

Modern Systems

  • Upgrading: Investing in a modern, energy-efficient furnace can reduce the likelihood of breakdowns and improve overall home safety. Some insurance providers may offer discounts for updated systems.

Filing a Claim for Furnace Damage

Steps to Take

Document the Damage

  • Evidence Collection: Take photos and videos of the damage and any related issues. Keep records of all repair estimates and communications with repair professionals.

Contact Your Insurer

  • Prompt Reporting: Notify your insurance company as soon as possible. Provide them with the documentation and follow their instructions for filing a claim.

Review Your Policy

  • Policy Terms: Carefully review your homeowners insurance policy to understand the specific coverage details and any exclusions that may apply to your furnace.


Homeowners insurance can cover furnace damage, but only under specific conditions related to covered perils like fire, lightning, hail, and windstorms. Routine wear and tear or mechanical breakdowns are typically not covered. To ensure your furnace is adequately protected, consider supplementary options like home warranties or specific policy endorsements. Regular maintenance and timely upgrades can also help prevent issues and extend the life of your furnace. Understanding your policy and taking preventive measures will help you manage your home’s heating system effectively.

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