Water Damage To Your Home – Why It Happens and How To Prevent It

A woman standing in front of a pot of water, demonstrating how to prevent water damage to your home.

Having to deal with water damage in a home is one of the biggest fears among homeowners. And for a good reason. When water protrudes in places it is not supposed to, it destroys nearly everything in its path. Besides leaving behind the damage, it also leaves mold and mildew, which can be detrimental for your health. 

According to water damage statistics, close to 40% of all US homeowners have experienced a financial loss because of water damage. Fortunately, about 93% of all water damage is preventable. Therefore, you can prevent them just by regular home maintenance. 

Why Water Damage Happens 

Not all water damage comes from extreme weather conditions. There are many other ways in which water can get inside your home and wreak havoc. Here are the most common ones:

1. Blocked gutters 

The first line of defense against rain in your home is the gutter system. It drains the rainwater away from your house. However, leaves and other outdoor debris can easily clog it. When this happens, water overflows the gutter edges and starts coming through the walls, ceiling, or floors. So if you ask yourself when to clean gutters, the answer is simple: the more the better! General suggestion is right before fall because that’s the of the rainy season.

2. Pipe leaks and damage

Pipes are sensitive to both temperature and pressure changes. If they freeze, their walls can sustain damage, but they can still burst. Besides freezing, a loose-fitting or a broken pipe can easily flood the entire area around it. The damage occurs in a matter of minutes, and the flooding can leave a thick trail of mold. 

3. Malfunctioning appliances

Several home appliances commonly cause severe water damage in a home. Washing machine water supply lines, for example, are under constant pressure. If the supply lines are made of PVC or rubber, they can wear out quickly and cause a leak. One small rupture in them can cause severe flooding in your laundry room. 

Wrongly installed, poorly-maintained, or old water heaters are another cause for concern, as they have a high chance of leakage. When a water heater leaks, the flooding occurs in minutes, and the electricity supply near it can cause a real catastrophe. 

An AC unit can also cause water damage. When its moisture draining unit gets damaged or clogged with dust and dirt, it can start leaking right into your walls. It can damage both the walls and the floors. 

4. Intense weather conditions

Although severe weather accounts for a smaller percentage of water damage at homes, it can still be a nightmare. 

A heavy downpour can overflow the gutters. Strong winds could blow away some parts of your gutter system, along with some parts of the roof. These two together, at once, can be a recipe for disaster.

Snow, for instance, as lovely as it may look, can damage your roof if its layers are too heavy for it. When it starts melting, it can cause significant water damage in a home in case the drainage system isn’t good. 

Additionally, if you live in an area prone to floods, that can be a huge cause for concern. Floods can not only damage your home, but they can destroy it beyond repair. They leave completely soaked foundations and drenched walls, along with the mold. 

How To Protect Your Home From Water Damage?

Maybe you can’t influence the weather, but you can easily avoid most types of water damage. Regular maintenance is essential in water damage prevention. In a few easy steps, you can be fairly safe from water damage:

  • Clean your gutters and downspouts from the debris regularly
  • Inspect your roof for any missing, cracked, or aged tiles; repair the chimney if it has suffered any damage
  • Check the pipe joints beneath your sinks, dishwasher, shower cabin, or bathtub from time to time; make sure they are firmly sealed
  • Unclog the bathroom and kitchen drains on a regular basis
  • Scan faucets and appliance hoses for any damage or wears and tears
  • Seal and caulk any tiny holes around windows, in your bathroom, in the attic, or the basement
  • Use proper insulation materials while building or repairing the house

How To Tell If You Have Water Damage In Your Home And What To Do

Signs of water damage in the home are very obvious. By noticing them on time, you can prevent a disaster. Here are a few common places to keep an eye on before it’s too late:

  • The attic. Check the attic for any signs of mold, mildew smell, water stains, dripping places. 
  • The floor. Bulked or warped wooden floors or laminate are usually signs of water damage beneath your feet. 
  • The walls and the ceiling. Dark yellow stains appearing on the walls or the ceiling usually indicate pipe leakage.
  • The kitchen and the bathroom. Any warping or stains in the sink cabinets points to water leakage. Also, be aware of any rust in the water heater or mold in the room corners, on the walls, and in the bathroom.

In case you spot any of the signs of water damage, you should act immediately. Consulting a professional or making an appointment is the wisest thing to do. Many companies, including Water Damage Restoration Kings, respond urgently to any issues connected with water. Lastly, remember that no matter how small the leakage seems, it can quickly escalate into a disaster. 

If you live in Fort Worth you know that each year dramatic weather changes occur due to freezing rain and summer thunderstorms. In each case, the weather brings an excessive amount of water that results in flood damage or plumbing failures. Fort Worth Water Damage Restoration deals with various scenarios including flooding damages from severe weather conditions, overflowing gutters, plumbing system issues, leaking, pipe bursts, toilet or sinks overflow, water seepage into crawl spaces, and HVAC system problems. All of these issues can be prevented from happening with proper maintenance, but if they happen regardless, prompt water damage restoration is unavoidable.

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