Water damage can spell disaster for any homeowner. Clean up and repairs can be expensive and time consuming. The best strategy is to take preventative measures and protect your home from water damage.
Take a peek at these helpful tips to reduce your risk of water damage in your home:
1. Inspect your basement:
Take some time to head down to your basement and have a look around. Check out your walls for any cracks where water may seep in and have them repaired right away.
While you are looking around for cracks, check for signs of existing water damage. See if you notice any leaks or water stains on the walls or floor. You will want to have this damage and its source fixed as soon as possible in order to avoid more costly repairs down the road.
2. Do not over work your water heater:
Traditional water heaters are equipped with large storage tanks. These tanks hold gallons and gallons of water, meaning even a small leak can cause a huge mess in your home. If you are still using a tanked water heater be sure to have a member of our plumbing team out to your home yearly, to inspect your system for signs of damage.
It is also recommended that you replace your water heater every 10 years or so. Since traditional water heaters only have a life expectancy of around 10 to 13 years.
3. Look up:
A leaky roof is a major cause for concern, especially when it comes to your risk of water damage. Be on the lookout for signs of damage to your roof. Loose, curling or worn out shingles are great early warning signs that your home may be at risk.
Additionally, look for cracks or signs of leaking on your ceiling. Even a small leak can lead to some major water damage to your home.
4. Do not ignore your plumbing systems:
All too often plumbing systems get the out of sight, out of mind treatment. However, it is vital to stay up to date with plumbing maintenance. Over time, plumbing fixtures weaken or wear out, which can lead to leaks. Have your plumbing systems inspected annually to avoid unpleasant surprises and periodically check underneath your kitchen and bathroom sinks for signs of leakage.
You will also want to ensure that you have water pans under your appliances that may leak; water heaters, washing machines, air conditioners, etc.
5. Prevent basement flooding:
Life in the Midwest means wild and often unpredictable weather and heavy rainfall is common during the spring and summer months. Large amounts of rainfall can often led to basement flooding, especially if your sump pump cannot keep up. Making yearly maintenance and system checks crucial in your battle against water damage. A simple test you can perform to check the function of your sump pump is to pour five gallons of water in your sump hole. Call us right away if you notice any signs that your sump pump is not functioning properly.
You may also consider having a backup battery added to your sump pump. Having a backup battery system will help ensure that your sump pump keeps working, even if a strong storm knocks out the power.
6. Perform simple maintenance tasks:
Make sure that your plumbing fixtures are properly caulked and sealed. Caulking is a simple task that you can perform periodically to help prevent leaks and water damage.
Do not forget to inspect and caulk around your windows as well. Improperly sealed windows will allow water and moisture to seep in and damage your home.
7. Remember, water damage is not only an inside problem
The foundation and exterior of your home can also be at risk for water damage. Keep your gutters cleaned and make sure that your downspouts are always flowing away from your home’s foundation. Make sure any exterior drains on your property are clear from debris.
When landscaping, make sure that any top soil next to your home slopes down and away. Keep all shrubbery at least 18 inches away from your home. These steps will help keep water from damaging your homes foundation.