What the heck is "Pennsylvania American Water" ???

OK, I've owned homes before and never heard of it. But just a few months ago I bought a house in NE Pa and then last week I get this letter from "Pennsylvania American Water" asking if I want to purchase their service which covers repairs to my water and sewer lines for $12 a month should there be any problems.
It's a very "official" looking letter, kind of like those mass-mailing letters you get that look like they come from the Veterans Administration but have absolutely nothing at all to do with the govenment.
Is this, as I suspect, just another commercial company trying to sell me something I don't need? It says it's a subsidiary of "American Water Resources" based in Alton IL. They have a website: http://www.amwater.com
My new house is just 4 years old and all the water and sewer is code and ABS etc unlike my last 125 year old home with cast pipe that had lots of root problems.
It would be nice to be covered in case of major repair needs, but I'm wondering if this is a case like buying $100 extra coverage for your $300 washer machine at time of purchase that is both too expensive and unecessary.
What do you people think?
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Look closely at two things:
1) The "Spotlight" column on their web page, which includes such things as "Hydrant flushing schedule", and a link to this: "Request or Change Service Turning the Water On To begin service at your new home, or to restore seasonal service, call our customer service office at 1-800-565-7292. If you call, make sure to have your service address, billing address, and telephone number handy."
2) Your water bill
This is your water company, silly. :-)
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46erjoe wrote:

Water. American Water is a company that operates in many US states.
http://www.amwater.com/awpr1/paaw/default.html
Here is their Homeowner Services page.
http://www.amwater.com/awpr1/paaw/homeowner_services/index.html
--
Bill
In Hamptonburgh, NY
  Click to see the full signature.
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Worth it? You tell me. In my house, it would have cost me $3600 in the time I've lived in it. My total outlay for water and sewer problems in that time is $0. Like any other service policy, it may or may not be good depending if something actually happens. If my water main breaks it will probably cost tme that much to have it replaced.
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wrotF:

OK It's my water company silly. Don't they feel like they do good work? When I bought my new car, a 100,000 mile warranty automatically came with it. I didn't have to buy an add-on insurance package. My electric service was installed by Pa Power and Light. If something breaks, they come and fix it as long as it is not within the confines of my house. In NY the gas company would come in and fix any potentially dangerous problems in my house at no cost to me. I guess Pa American Water doesn't believe in themselves... which of course if true, DOES warrant me buying their offer. Hmmm. Whatever happened to quality assurance? Enlighten me if my logic is flawed. Thanks.
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wrote in message

They probably have little or no control over tree roots invading your pipes.
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46erjoe wrote:

Typically water companies are responsible to the curb shutoff, from there in you must install/maintain the line.
Usually you are responsible for installing/maintaining all of the sewer line up to the lateral connection.
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Sounds like they will cover the inside of you house for water and sewer problems. They only ran the water to the main shutoff at the street. After that, it is your responsibility. Your house plumbing is covered by the builder for a year or so, then it is up to you.

PA Water did not do the work. In that respect, your logic is wrong. I don't know what is covered, but if a drain blockage or sewer blockage is caused by you, and they cover it, they are just acting as an insurance company. Of curse, like any insurance company, they intend to make a profit.
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wrote in message

A home warranty would cover the pipes inside the house and the city fixes what goes up to your sidewalk. This insurance like policy covers what lies in between. If it covers interior pipes it might almost be worth it but only if you are a firm believer in total insurance coverage.
Just two months after buying my house, I paid over $2000 for a new sewer line from the house to the curb. Home warrannty wouldn't cover it because it overflowed outside at a cleanout near the house not from a toilet or sink. City wouldn't pay because the roots intruded through a buried cleanout near the street but on my property.
If only I had known there was a cleanout at that location hidden and buried 18" benieth the ground before they dug a giant hole. You would think the plumbers would have stopped at the cleanout and called me instead of digging it up. A good story but way too long to tell.
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46erjoe wrote:

Yes your logic is a little flawed. Gas leaks can cause enormous explosions and damage surrounding houses and kill people. A water line or sewer line break is just expensive.
This type of insurance by the local utility is just starting but will soon be very common and it is like the telephone people and their insurance plan. However the telephone company will cover the problems in your house, while the water utility just covers water lines up to your house.
Both types of insurance are non starters for customers, but very profitable to the companies. Phone lines in a house (the company is always responsible for the phone line up to the house connection) almost never have any problems, so the insurance is pure profit. Water lines between the meter and the house, range from occasional to never depending on the part of the country you live in. The place were water problems are more common is in the house so they don't offer insurance for that.
People are gullible so they buy these things because they don't cost much per month. I just heard of someone's aunt that still rented phones from the telephone company. Guess how much money she wasted over the past 25 or so years compared to buying her own phones.
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wrote:

What Edwin and the others said.
But even if they had done the work on the pipes to one's individual home, their offer to sell a maintenance contract has nothing to do with the quality of their work, or their own view of the quality of the work.
They wouldn't consult with the men who installed the pipes, who might know if the work was good or bad. That's a different department.
This is from the Make Money department, and they would offer a maintenance contract on my teacups if they though I would buy it.
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It's just like any other insurance policy - you have to decide if you will be able to pay if something breaks. In the long run, you will always come out behind. If you're really worried about it, you're better off putting that $12 per month into an investment account of some sort to have for emergencies.
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wrote:

Which is a lot like gambling. With life insurance, you're betting them that you'll die early, and they're hoping you won't. Especially if you don't have family, it's nice to have someone hoping you won't die, (but otoh, if you don't have family, why do you need life insurance?)

You probably know this but what the heck: This probably won't be enough for the repair, unless the water company is making incredible profits on this thing.
80 or 90 percent won't have any repairs, so some of the ones who need repairs will have to pay what one could save at 12 dollars a month, and others will have to pay more or much more. IOW if the repairs could be paid for with 12 dollars a month, all the money they take in from the people who need no repairs would be profit.
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wrotF:

Guess I'll flip a coin on this one.
One the one hand a repair if necessary will be quite costly. On the other hand the house is brand new and all the sewer/water pipes are high tech (I would suppose) ... unlike the old cast iron ones in my old house that regularly got roots in the joints.
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Bank the money. Set aside X amount per year in a separate account reserved for disasters. And, keep one credit card account empty just for stuff like that, too. I don't know about you, but I get at least 2-3 letters a month from other credit cards that'll allow me to bounce balances from one place to another with no interest, seemingly forever.
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I wonder what water and sewer lines means here. They are responsible for their lines leading to your connections. Are they offering to replace internal lines that leak? I've had to fix two in the last 15 years. Would they fixed the leak in my shower? Or replaced the two sink traps I had to do?
I owned a house in North Carolina where a hose pipe in the crawl space froze and broke. I replaced it with PVC, slanted it, and installed a drain plug. Will they do that for you?
Dick
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