Water is necessary to keep a home running. But when one of life’s most essential components unnecessarily seeps into your home, damage occurs.
Difficult to eliminate and extremely costly to fix, water damage can be prevented. Homeowners should take preventative steps throughout the year to lessen their chances of experiencing the expense and inconvenience of the prevalent yet disreputable event known as water damage.
Here is a checklist on how to prevent water damage in your home.
1. Review the Water Bill
Your monthly water bill is a solid indicator of water leaks. If you receive a water bill that is both unexpectedly and explosively high, it is almost a guarantee that a water leak has sprung in your home.
2. Clean the Gutters
Regularly rid the gutters of natural debris, like twigs and fallen leaves, especially if your home is located in close proximity to trees. Proper drainage is critical to ensure the gutters perform at an optimal level. In the event the gutters are clogged, water spills over, saturating the home’s siding and roof and even leaking into the foundation.
If you’d rather not risk your physical safety by climbing a high ladder to access the gutters, hire a professional gutter cleaning service to handle the task twice a year. Gutter cleanings typically cost $50 to $250, with costs based on the home’s height and size.
3. Maintain Greenery Roots
Trees near your home are likely to feature roots that extend two to three times the height of the tree. Invasive tree roots can pose as a problem. Roots are constantly in search of water, leading to the roots winding around plumbing pipes, sprinkling systems and septic tanks—and rupturing them.
Cutting down the trees or shrubs is a last resort. Instead, homeowners have the option to build root barriers, carefully plan where to plant new trees and bushes and choose to plant trees with slower growth or milder rooting tendencies. Oak trees and sugar maples are idyllic to plant near homes, due to their slow rate of maturity. Willows and elm trees, in contrast, develop aggressive rooting systems.
4. Install a Water Sensor
Water detection devices are useful in alerting the homeowner of unexpected moisture. Place the water sensor in areas where intrusive water leaks are possible, like near the water heater, sump pump, washing machine and dishwasher. Water sensors can be programmed to send an immediate alert to your smartphone as soon as the devices detect moisture.
5. Inspect Appliance Hoses
The washing machine’s hot and cold water hoses undergo wear and tear over time. Regularly check the washing machine hoses for cracks or brittleness. Replace the hoses as soon as possible if they show signs of wear. Hoses, regardless of condition, typically should be replaced every five years.
After washing machine hoses, hot water tanks are the next most common source of water damage in household appliances. Examine the hot water tank periodically to ensure they are performing at peak levels.
6. Maintain the Sump Pump
Storm season unleashes massive amounts of rainwater. If your sump pump is nonfunctional, water damage will result. Annually test the sump pump. Perform more frequent testing during storm season.
Testing the sump pump costs zero dollars. Yet, the peace of mind that comes along with knowing the pump works in stormy weather is invaluable. Along with testing, install a battery powered backup sump pump. A generator, too, keeps the sump pump operational in the event the electricity goes out.
7. Look for Water Leaks
Water damage leaves evidence: murky spots under pipes, mold growth and stained ceilings. When proof of water damage is evident, take immediate steps to address the issue.
Regularly visit the basement and check for signs of water leaks, especially in dark corners where water pipes are hidden. If the water pipes have sprung a leak, promptly fix the drainpipes.
Small repairs are easy for most homeowners to accomplish, and the immediate attention you give thwarts an expensive fix down the road.
8. Service the HVAC
The air conditioning unit can spur moisture buildup, if irregularly maintained. An overflowing drain pan, a disconnected drain line, dirty filters, a low refrigerant charge and improperly insulated ductwork are causes for an HVAC water leak. Service the HVAC at least once a year to prevent water damage.
9. Prevent Burst Pipes
Ruptured plumbing pipes are common occurrences, especially in the chilly winter months. Reduce the chances of burst pipes in the following ways:
- Turn on a faucet and allow water to slowly drip during subfreezing temperatures.
- Circulate warm air around the water pipes by propping open the cupboards under the sinks.
- Keep the heat on, at the lowest possible temperature, when you are not at home.
- Insulate exterior water pipes to keep them from breaking in icy weather.
Stay proactive during the winter season to avert water damage caused by frozen pipes.
What to Do When You Have Water Damage
If water damage strikes your home or business, contact the most reputable water damage restoration experts, Target Restoration. Our technicians arrive at your water damaged location within 30 minutes of your emergency call.
Water damage prevention is a serious responsibility. Structural damage and mold infestations worsen 24 to 48 hours after moisture first appears. Target Restoration recognizes the urgency of beginning cleanup immediately. After arriving, our technicians assess the damage, prepare a restoration plan and promptly start the cleanup.
Water Damage Restoration
Target Restoration’s water damage restoration services include thorough water extraction, water mitigation, moisture control and dehumidification. Sanitization and deodorization of the premises is included as well. Our knowledgeable technicians also assist you with filing insurance claims. When you are deciding to repair or replace water damaged possessions, the Target Restoration team is available to evaluate the goods and recommend restoration options.
Our licensed and insured team also tackles the aftermath of storm disasters and flooding in varying commercial structures, such as hospitals, schools, retail buildings, factories, warehouses and restaurants.