Water is ten times more likely to cause damage to your home than fire. Water damage is one of the most common and costly disasters affecting U.S. residences; causing billions of dollars in losses for homeowners and renters a year. You can protect yourself with the correct amount and type of insurance coverage.
It only takes a small amount of water spilling onto floors from a faulty pipe, a leaky water heater or an overflowing toilet to cause thousands of dollars in damage to your home and contents. You may know the precautions to prevent a fire, but you might not be aware there are leak detection devices or sensors that can help protect your home from an expensive water damage loss.
The Institute for Business & Home Safety offers these tips:
Inside Your Home
- Inspect hoses and faucets. Check hoses leading to water heaters, dishwashers, washing machines and refrigerator icemakers annually. Replace those with cracks or leaks and replace them all every five to seven years.
- Inspect showers and tubs. Check the seal and caulking around showers and tubs to make sure they are watertight.
- Shut off the water supply to the washing machine while away on vacation. Never leave the house while the washer or dishwasher is running.
- Know the location of the main water shut off valve in your home. A damaged hose or burst pipe can send water racing into your home. By knowing where the valve is and how to shut off the main water supply, you can save yourself time and money.
- Install an emergency pressure release valve in your plumbing system. This will protect against the increased pressure caused by freezing pipes and can help prevent your pipes from bursting.
- Check your pipes. Look closely for cracks and leaks and have the broken pipes repaired immediately.
Outside Your Home
- Caulk and seal windows. Preventive maintenance will guard against water seepage.
- Inspect your roof. You should look for missing, damaged and aging shingles.
- Check the downspouts. Remove any debris that may have accumulated in downspouts and rain gutters. Remember to position downspouts so that they will directly water away from the house.
- Check sprinklers and irrigation systems. Make sure sprinklers and irrigation systems are not damaging the walls and the foundation of your home. Try turning off and draining outside faucets to protect against frozen pipes.
- Install gutter guards. Gutter guards protect the clogging of the roof gutter so that the water from the roof may flow easily and accumulation of water does not take place on the roof but away from the house.
Properly maintaining a home is one of the best ways to prevent water damage. Contact us today if you have any questions.