Water damage can be one of the most expensive, time-consuming, and devastating things to happen to your home. There are numerous causes of water damage, with common ones including flooding, broken pipes, and poor maintenance. Thankfully, there are also plenty of ways to help prevent water damage from ever happening.
1. The More You Know.
First and foremost, make sure you know where your home’s main shut-off valve is. If disaster does ever strike your home in the form of a burst pipe, being able to quickly shut off your water can be immensely helpful.
It’s also a good idea to turn off your water if you’re going away on a long trip. This way, if there’s any undetected potential for water damage in your home, it won’t happen while you’re away and unable to do anything about it.
2. Cold Weather Precautions.
In the cold winter months, make sure to take proper precautions with your plumbing system to prevent possible water damage. This includes unhooking your hose and turning off any water sources outside of your home, such as for your sprinkler system. Some sprinkler systems also may need to be blown out to remove any excess water.
Make sure your home is properly heated at around 55 degrees in the fall and winter to help prevent frozen pipes. Some people choose to leave a tiny amount of water running during the night, or they will leave their under-the-sink cabinet doors open to let heat hit the pipes more directly. These are good ideas on especially cold nights, or if you’re going on a winter vacation.
3. Replacements When Needed.
Many items and systems in our homes will need replacing or upgrading at some point. One item that many people forget about are their washing machine hoses, which are surprisingly one of the most common causes of water damage. In fact, Bob Vila reports that outdated washing machine hoses cause over $150 million worth of water damage each year! These are inexpensive and easy to replace, and should be switched out every 3-5 years.
Appliances and appliance accessories are also worth checking periodically, and either repairing or replacing as needed. These can include refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, and as previously mentioned, washing machines.
4. Annual Plumbing Inspections.
Having an annual plumbing inspection is one of the best ways to help possible water damage in your home. Your plumber will thoroughly inspect every source of water both inside and outside of your home, searching for any current or potential problem areas. This is a great way to fix any problems before they have the chance to become damage. If you’ve never had a plumbing inspection, call your plumber today!
5. Outside of the Home.
Cleaning out your home’s rain gutters and spouts seasonally, inspecting your roof, checking your sprinklers, and keeping an eye on your sump pump are just a few of the ways you can help prevent water damage in and around your home.