What is “Access” and How Does it Affect Your Covered Home Warranty Claim?

Contractor repairing a patch in a wall

Independent service providers must have access to covered systems or appliances to perform home warranty repairs or replacements. After all, they can’t fix what they can’t reach!

Old Republic Home Protection (ORHP) may or may not cover the cost to create access to render a covered home warranty repair, depending on the covered system or appliance and your plan level. In this article, we'll break down the Limits of Liability section listed in your home warranty plan's Declaration of Coverage.

Access Through Unobstructed Walls, Ceilings, and Floors

When an independent service provider performs a covered heating and plumbing service, access will be provided through unobstructed walls, ceilings, and floors only.

You are responsible for clearing any obstruction, like tile or paneling, before a service provider can continue with the diagnosis or repair. If the service provider already left your home, they will return at no additional cost to resume work once you establish the necessary access.

Restoration of Wall, Ceiling, Floor Coverings, etc.

Once we create the necessary covered access and complete covered repairs, we will restore the area to a rough finish. ORHP will not cover the restoration of walls, ceilings, floor coverings, cabinets, countertops, tile, paint, or the like.

How does ORHP define rough finish condition?

  • Sheetrock wall or ceiling: ORHP will patch the sheetrock, tape the seams, and apply sheetrock mud to the seams.

  • Floor: If there is cement under the floor covering, ORHP will patch the cement, not the floor covering (e.g., carpet, tile, wood flooring, etc.). If the material under the floor covering is wood, ORHP will patch the plywood under the floor covering.

  • Stucco wall or ceiling: ORHP will patch the wiring that holds the stucco in place and apply one coat of stucco.

  • Cement wall or ceiling: ORHP will replace the material that holds the cement in place and one coat of cement.

If we created access through wall board, ORHP will replace the first layer. If the first layer is plywood, then we will replace with plywood. If it is wood, we will replace with wood. Install is to a rough finish.

Providing or Closing Access

ORHP will provide access, diagnosis, repair, or replacement for items listed in the Coverage Plan Limits and Optional Coverage Plan Limits sections of your Declaration of Coverage, up to the limit specified. Any costs exceeding the plan limit are your responsibility. See your state’s Declaration of Coverage for complete details.

If the service provider already left your home, they will return at no additional cost to complete the repairs once the necessary access is provided.

We will restore access to a rough finish for items within the Coverage Plan Limits, as long as the covered access, diagnosis, and repair didn’t exhaust the Coverage Plan Limit dollar amount.

Non-related Systems

ORHP does not provide coverage to remove or install non-related systems, appliances, or equipment to render a covered repair or replacement.

Non-related refers to systems, appliances, or equipment that are separate from the malfunctioning system, appliance, or equipment.

For example, if we must remove the recirculating pump to replace the water heater (or vice versa), it is not covered because the recirculating pump and the water heater are separate systems. However, if we must remove your water heater to repair the supply line connected to it, it is covered since we are repairing the supply line to the water heater.

Want more great content like this? Sign up for our newsletter.