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How to Prevent Water Damage

You work hard to take care of your property. However, unless handled quickly, a water –related mishap can devastate your investment – and your home.

To help prevent water damage from even happening, it’s important to stay on top of home upkeep. That includes a simple maintenance routine and regular inspection of your interior plumbing and exterior building materials.

That way you can identify and correct faults before they become serious, avoiding a potential problem altogether.

Did you know?

Most common indoor water damage results from leaks or overflow from:

    Pipes, sinks, baths, toilets, appliances, aquariums or waterbeds.
    Improperly installed appliances such as washing machines and dishwashers.
    Hot water tank or rupture of the brass valve.
    Frozen or ruptured pipes

Some tips for when you’re away from home:

    Turn off main water valve before you leave, and drain all the pipes and appliances.

    Sometime shutting off the main water supply may not be an option; for instance, you may have an automatic sprinkler system. Shutting off the valves to al plumbing     appliances is a good alternative in case a hose cracks.

    Arrange for someone to check the house and ensure the furnace hasn’t accidentally     shut off in winter which could cause the pipes to burst.

If you go away for more than seven consecutive days during heating season, it is mandatory to turn off the main water supply or arrange for someone to ensure that the house is adequately heated, to maintain your insurance coverage.

Here are useful tips to help you protect your home from water damage – inside and out. Make sure to add these areas to a regular maintenance schedule to identify problems before they become serious.
Indoors

Pipes, plumbing and appliances

    Listen for unusual sounds, which may indicate leaks in water lines or pipes
    Repair leaky faucet and dripping toilets.
    Inspect your hot water tank, under sinks and behind washing machines.
    Check washing machine hoses for damage. Replace cracked or worn hoses,
    Replace wax toilet ring if there is evidence of leaking.
    Install a water level monitoring device.

Sump pumps and sewers

    To prevent sewer water backup, install a sewer backflow valve that closes     automatically if the main sewer water gets backed up.

    Check the sump pump and the backflow valves and have a plumber inspect them at     least once a year.
   
    Listen for strange noises coming from the sump pump motor.
   
    If you notice oil on the surface of the water in your sump pit, the oil seal. Leaking oil can cause the motor to burn out.
   
    Replace the batteries on your sump pump regularly.

Ceilings

    Look for bubbling paint or stains on ceilings, which can indicate a leaking pipe or water dripping from the roof.

Walls

    Look for water stains, which can indicate a leaking pipe.
    Feel your basement walls for evidence of flaking, dampness, stains, or mould.

Floors

    Check your floors for water stains, particularly near dishwashers and sinks.
    To maintain easy access, do not cover floor drains.

Moisture problems

    Use a dehumidifier, if necessary, in damp areas such as basements.
    Be sure the air in your bathroom and kitchen is well vented to avoid condensation.
    Check that your dryer is properly vented’-clear out lint build up in the exhaust hose and external vent to prevent obstructions that can lead to moisture.

Outdoors

Roof

    Have your roof inspected fir cracks breaks, and loose or missing shingles.
    Look for leaks and holes in rain, gutters, downspouts and extensions.
    Clear gutters and downspouts of debris such as leaves and dirt.
    Make sure you’re your downspouts are directed away from your home.
    Make sure screw heads and fasteners are properly sealed.
    Inspect and seal around chimneys, roof stacks and vents.

Outside walls , doors and windows

    Assess glazing, weather-stripping door and window seals and other exterior  elements for damage.

    Look for cracks on outside walls and foundations and repair them, if any found.
    Repair or replace caulking around windows and doors to make watertight.

    Check that exterior siding is securely fastened, as missing screws can create openings for water.

    Keep any source of water, such as snow, away from your home’s exterior walls.
    Shut off water supply to exterior water faucets during the winter to prevent pipes from freezing.


 

Posted on Monday, September 30, 2013 at 02:42PM by Registered CommenterElaine | CommentsPost a Comment

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