Square One finds bidets are responsible for over $20,000 in water damage per claim

April 16, 2024

VANCOUVER, British Columbia — An incorrectly installed bidet can cause over $20,000 in damage, according to a recent study from Square One.

Square One found that bidet-related water damage claims over the past three years each resulted in an average of $20,873 worth of damage. Moreover, this figure comes from more than a few isolated incidents. Bidet ownership continues to skyrocket in Canada since the infamous toilet paper shortage of 2020. Most of these are actually bidet attachments, which are devices mounted to an existing toilet and often self-installed. While the marketing for these attachments promote easy installation, it’s clear that many are not doing so correctly — incurring thousands of dollars in water damage as a result.

“With the sharp increase in bidet popularity the past few years, we started paying greater attention to bidet-related water damage specifically,” says Wendy McCracken, Claims Manager at Square One. “The frequency and severity of such claims is a lot higher than people seem to think, given how simple installing bidet attachments appears to be. It’s important to make people aware of the damage leaking water from a bidet can cause.

“Home insurance covers many instances of water damage from bidets, particularly if the damage arose from a sudden hose burst. However, that may not be the case if the damage were the result of a gradual leak over time.”

In either case, the best course of action is to prevent water damage in the first place. To that end, there are a few things bidet owners should be aware of to avoid leaks. Bidet attachment manufacturers insist that they’re easy to DIY — but evidence suggests that they aren’t.

“Given the rise in water damage claims, it might indeed be wiser for most homeowners to consider professional installation,” says Josh Mitchell, Plumbing Technician with The Plumbing Lab. “Those without any prior plumbing knowledge should use a contractor to install the attachment. A professional plumber can ensure that the attachment is securely and correctly installed, reducing the risk of leaks or water damage.

“For homeowners who decide to install a bidet attachment themselves, it’s important to thoroughly understand their home’s plumbing system and follow the manufacturer’s instructions closely.”

Mitchell offers the following tips for those who feel confident in their plumbing knowledge and decide to install the bidet attachment themselves:

  1. Ensure that all connections are tightened securely to prevent leaks.
  2. Be mindful of the water pressure. High water pressure might require additional adjustments or parts to ensure the bidet functions properly without leaks.
  3. Double-check for compatibility between the bidet attachment and their toilet model to avoid improper fits that can lead to leaks or malfunctions. This is crucial because toilets vary in shape, and trying to add an incorrectly sized bidet model to your toilet will be a problem.
  4. Conduct a thorough inspection of the toilet and surrounding area before installation to identify any existing issues, such as leaks or cracks, that may need to be addressed beforehand.
  5. Use a high-quality plumber’s tape (Teflon tape) on threaded connections to create a watertight seal and prevent leaks.
  6. Consider installing a shut-off valve on the water supply line to the bidet attachment for easier maintenance and repairs in the future.
  7. Test the bidet attachment thoroughly after installation to ensure proper functionality and check for any leaks or malfunctions.
  8. Keep the manufacturer’s contact information and warranty details readily accessible in case any issues arise during or after installation.

Of course, not all the damage bidets cause is necessarily due to improper installation. Failing hoses are another common issue. Many bidet attachments come with plastic hoses, which deteriorate and eventually burst. Ideally, replace plastic hoses and fittings with metal ones. It’s also important to check hoses and connections regularly for leaks.

If a bidet (or any other water appliance) does spring a leak — even a small one — shut off the water supply immediately. The water supply is a simple valve behind the toilet.

If you come home to find a burst water hose or other leak, don’t hesitate. Shut off the main water valve, and do what you can to remove excess water. Contact your home insurance provider as early as possible. They’ll arrange for a restoration company to come and start the drying process — water damage restoration needs to begin as quickly as possible, ideally within 24 hours. As moisture seeps further into floors and walls, it continues to cause damage (including mould) and gets more and more expensive to repair.

To learn more about bidets, including professional installation and maintenance tips, visit Square One’s guide to bidets. For more information on insuring against water damage, visit this page.

Media contact

Aneel Mattu
Director, Marketing
Square One Insurance Services
1.855.331.6933 ext 127
778.919.2096 (M)

Established in 2011, Square One is an online home and car insurance provider. Square One offers home insurance in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Quebec. It offers auto insurance in Ontario, with availability in more provinces to follow. Square One focuses on providing customers with affordable home and car insurance that they can customize to their individual needs. For more information, visit squareone.ca.