Small or large – fancy or simple – all homes are subject to water damage. Current trends for homes with many bathrooms, multiple sinks, outdoor living spaces and other ‘wet rooms’ have significantly increased the risk of water damage in newer homes. Older properties are just more vulnerable due to corroding pipes, which face a likely change of failure after 30 years. Approximately 37% of homeowners will experience water damage severe enough to need outside help cleaning up.
As a homeowner, you need to be aware of all the possible things to protect your home. Take a look at three typical problems. Address any issues now; before a disaster.
In these warm months, our A/Cs work constantly. Bacteria and grime can collect in, clog up, and overflow from the water lines. A condensation line leak could go unnoticed until you see a stain or feel wet floors. In the meantime, the high humidity and lack of light might even lead to mold growth.
To prevent A/C condensation line leaks, inspect regularly for moisture–every time you change the filter. Double check the AC condensation line pitch and connection angles; reroute messy connections. And, most importantly, diligently service the unit and clean the line every year.
Dishwashers are another possible culprit of water damage in your home. When your dishwasher fails, it can send 20 gallons of water onto your kitchen floor. Check for any leaks and address the problem immediately. Ofter, mold or food blocks the water lines. Using the wrong (or too much) soap will cause a flood. Old seals can get brittle and crack.
A typical load of laundry uses at least 30 gallons of water, roughly the amount to fill a standard bathtub. While washing machines are built to last, it only takes one hose or seal to fail and you have a huge problem. Usually, the problem is at the connectors; The hoses can wear out, become brittle, can get loose or corrode. More than 50% of all washing machine water damage claims can be traced back to a supply hose failure, which can spill out 5 gallons of water per minute.
Perform regular checks on your washing machine, inspecting beneath the unit as well as behind it. Replace plastic water lines with braided metal piping. Overloading the machine with clothes, or soap can also cause an overflow. Consider a plastic pan, slightly larger than the unit, under the matching to catch leaks.
Many kitchen floods are caused by a broken refrigerator ice maker water supply line or connection. The typical plastic water supply line degrades and cracks; replace the inexpensive plastic with a copper or stainless steel line that offers better durability.
Be careful when moving the refrigerator. The supply line may become kinked or break if the refrigerator is shoved too close to the wall. Conversely, if the refrigerator is pulled too far from the wall when cleaning behind it, the water line or connection could be over-stressed and may rupture.