Water may be essential to keep yourself healthy, but it can be harmful to your home and personal belongings. When water seeps into your home, it can severely damage the building materials, furniture, and your personal content.
Building materials like wood, drywall, and insulation absorb water which causes them to become weakened, warped, and discolored.
Too much water damage can weaken these materials enough to threaten their structural integrity. Your flooring and furnishings are also at risk as they can sustain severe damage from excess water. Materials affected by water are not only in danger of severe damage, but also mold growth.
Sometimes, water damage can be avoided, as in cases where the damage is caused by fixable issues like leaking pipes. Other times, water damage is unavoidable, as in cases concerning natural disasters like storms and flooding. But regardless of the cause, you can help limit the extent of water damage with good prevention practices. Use the following steps as a guide to help you limit the potential harm that water can cause in your home.
Perform Regular Maintenance
Perhaps the most important part of water damage prevention is performing regular maintenance on your home. Leaks, cracks, and clogs are among the most common causes for water damage, but they are also issues that can be easily fixed. With regular maintenance and inspections on your plumbing system and water supply lines, you can find and fix such issues before they lead to damage.
Avoid dumping grease and oils down your sinks to prevent clogging and keep an eye out for any leaking or cracked pipes in your plumbing system and washing machine supply lines. It’s recommended that your home’s washing machine hoses be replaced every five years regardless of the current hoses’ condition.
If you have an unexpected increase in your water bill, it could indicate a water leak. As such, pay attention to your water bill and inspect water pipes. A temporary solution for leaky pipes is to adhere pipe repair tape to the leak, but this method should be used only temporarily until the pipe can be fixed by a professional.
If your home’s roof is missing shingles or has damaged ones, those should be replaced immediately. Otherwise, your home’s roof will be ineffective protection if water starts to leak from it into your home.
You should also check your home’s foundation for any cracks because that may allow water to leak inside. You can repair the cracks in your foundation by filling them with caulk.
Make Sure Your Home Has an Effective Gutter System and Yard Grading
An effective gutter system will properly run water away from the property. It is very important to clean and remove debris from your gutters to prevent clogging. Otherwise, the water can flow over the gutter and can cause damage to your home’s siding and foundation.
In addition, get downspout extensions for your gutter if they don’t direct water far enough away from your home. The downspouts should direct water at least five feet away so it doesn’t pool near the home and cause foundational damage.
Effective yard grading will also guide water away from your home. Yard grading concerns the slope of your home’s lawn which should slope away from the foundation. The slope of your lawn should be steep enough to keep an excessive amount of water away your property. You still want your lawn to maintain some water so the grass can be watered and the soil doesn’t dry out, but you don’t want pools of water near your home or on your lawn.
If your yard isn’t directing enough water away from your home, then you need to alter the slope of your lawn. You can either do this yourself by adding more dirt and grass to your home’s perimeter or by hiring a professional landscaper.
Get a Sump Pump
Not all water damage is completely preventable, such as the damage caused by severe storms. However, there are still ways to limit the amount of damage they can cause. One of the ways is by installing a sump pump, which is commonly used to collect water from flooded basements. Sump pumps are highly recommended because they are the most effective way to protect your basement from flooding, especially during a severe storm or natural flood.
If you have a sump pump, you’ll want to test yearly to ensure it works. Otherwise, you may find out the pump is broken when you need it most.
Even with proper preparation and maintenance, not all water damage can be avoided. If your home suffers from water damage and is in need of repair, contact ServiceMaster Kwik Restore for our professional water damage restoration services.
Our technicians will extract water from your home, dry out and clean the property, and make structural repairs. The quicker you react to water damage, the less likely your home will sustain structural damage or be affected by mold growth.