Preventing Water Damage in Your Home
SUNDAY, MAY 28, 2017
The best solution to water damage is preventing it from happening.You do not want to deal with water damage, so why not make sure you're as safe as you can be?
Preventing water damage and mold growth is not as hard as you'd think. Of course, it requires some time and attention, but it's better than waking up to find a water drenched floor, wet furniture, and who knows what other damage may have come along as well?
Unexpected Water Damage Can Ruin Your Day
Yep. Water damage can definitely ruin your day. Moreover, it can ruin your week, and in very bad cases - ruin your month, your home and your bank account. Since we're big fans of the saying "better safe than sorry and angry" (paraphrasing a bit), we thought we'd help you to prevent water damage from happening to you, or at least minimize its effects if it did happen.
The best prevention is by proper maintenance of your property, and constant inspection of potential hazards and water damage causes.
Here are our main suggestions:
- Inspect every hose and pipe visible in your home - dishwashers, washing machines, refrigerators, ice makers - they all have hoses which are prone to wear over time. Be sure to check them, and have them replaced if they look bad or too old. If you're moving any of these appliances, watch out not to rip the hose by accident.
- Living in a cold area? Make sure your pipes don't freeze. Make sure the pipes are insulated and not out in the cold weather. Expose them to heat if possible (if they're in a cabinet - open the cabinet door), and if it's really really cold - keep the faucet dripping and the water flowing so the pipe doesn't freeze. Water expands when it freezes, and can cause a pipe to burst.
- Check your water mains and make sure the main valve is operational, and working properly. One of the first steps in case of water damage is closing the water mains, so the valve should be in good condition.
- If you have a sump pump, check it regularly - if your sump pump is broken, you'll know it only when it's too late. Be sure to test it before rainy weather and storms. If your sump pump breaks during a storm, it could ruin your whole basement, including furniture, appliances, carpeting and drywalls.
- Check your gutters, roof and slopes in the yard - clogged gutters are a recipe for big trouble, and in the middle of a rainy weather or storm, that's no fun at all. The gutters protect your house's siding walls and foundation, so make sure they're in working condition and have them cleaned regularly, or at least prior to winter once a year. Other causes for water on the foundations include slopes in the yard directing to your home rather than away from the foundations, so be sure they're headed the right way.
- Check for leaks around the house - if you have crawl spaces, water pipes running in hidden places, or just places in the house you rarely visit but can be affected from water (an attic, for example), be sure to check them every few weeks. The sooner you fix the leak, you'll suffer from less damages. Long term leaks can lead to mold growth and mildew, which are much harder to treat (and probably not covered by insurance).
- Keep an eye on your water bill - if you suddenly have a high water bill, you may have a leak somewhere in the house. If you want to be sure, you need to check it out yourself or ask a professional to come inspect your home and piping.
You should perform these checks and make sure you do not see any dark spots on walls or floors at least once a year. If you feel uncertain, or suspect that you want to inspect further, call a professional to check that out - whether it's a plumber, water damage restoration company, or a home inspector.