Water damage in your home can go from bad to terrible in a relatively short amount of time. Water eats the fibers in your home’s wooden frame that make the wood durable, which can eventually cause severe structural damage. Mold can also grow in as little as a few weeks can make your family members sick with respiratory problems. Stop water damage as soon as you can.
Dealing With Sinks
Even in otherwise pristinely-maintained homes, often there are small leaks under sinks from the drain or the supply line that can be fixed quickly. If they are not, the water can drip and run into the wall or floor and cause slow but severe damage. The sooner a small drip is taken care of, the better.
Fixtures and Appliances
Every appliance in the modern day should have a supply line made out of braided stainless steel. Rubber, plastic and copper tubes tend to break down quickly, which cause a lot of leaks that can easily be prevented. Toilets, sinks, your washing machine and dishwasher, virtually everything that uses water should have both a 90-degree ball valve shutoff and a braided stainless steel hose to prevent water damage.
Another way to keep water damage from happening is to automate the shutoff process. Finding a leak once it has occurred is sometimes tricky, but technology is always on the job. There are water detectors that can identify if there is water on the floor, even in small quantities. At that point, the detector can turn off the water and ensure that the leak does not cause any damage at all. You can then address whatever is leaking when you get home. These can save you a small fortune the first time something leaks while you are on vacation.
Check Your Water Line
First, a leak will show up on your bill as excessive water usage. This is one way to identify that there is a leak, but it is not the best way (which of course is to call Major Damage!). You can also check your water meter, which is likely to be in a pit in front of your home. Once you access the meter, place a small piece of tape that lines up with part of the meter that looks like the hand of a clock. Then leave for six hours, and come back to check on the hand. If the hand has moved, you have a leak that will eventually cause water damage.
If you have a basement, your sump pump can be the difference between living over a bog and having a nice living or storage space underneath you. It can protect against insects, mold, and even leaning walls and cracked masonry. Testing your sump pump on at least a monthly basis is a wise idea to make sure it will work when a storm happens.
It is also critical to clean your gutters and downspouts regularly. Blocked water can back up into your roof’s decking, and even into your walls and cause extensive water damage. Cleaning your gutters and downspouts every fall and spring is an essential step toward homeownership that can prevent water damage.