There’s ways to prevent water damage in your home that are just common sense—don’t let your 5-year-old run the bath water for themselves, for instance, or making sure you hire a professional install your windows so you know they are watertight.
But there’s smaller, less obvious ways that you prevent water damage by regularly checking the areas that are most likely to suffer from it. Modern homes have plenty of appliances, sinks, showers and other places where water is merely controlled by hoses, taps or buttons. And let’s not even get into how electricity and water do not mix!
Some places in America have basements, but California homes don’t usually feature them. This list focuses on the types of things you’d find in a home in Orange County, the Inland Empire, San Diego and Los Angeles.
Where should you start when you’re trying to prevent water damage? The kitchen: a place that’s practically a water park.
- The Dishwasher: Periodically check for leaks under the sink where the hose connects to the water supply. Look around the base of the dishwasher for evidence of leaks, such as discolored, warped or soft flooring materials, or water damage to nearby cabinets.
- The Refrigerator: If your refrigerator has an icemaker, make sure the hose connection is securely attached to the water supply line. Also, a wet spot on the floor may be a sign of a crimped icemaker line about to burst.
- The Sink: Replace deteriorated caulk around sinks, and check the pipes under the sink for leaks. A slow-draining pipe may indicate a partially blocked drain that needs cleaning.
Not surprisingly, the bathroom has several common culprits that cause water damage:
- Showers And Bathtubs: Remove and replace deteriorated or cracked caulk and grout. Water from a broken supply pipe behind the wall can leak through these damaged sealants, causing stains or soft areas around nearby walls and floors. Leaking drain pipes and shower pan leaks are also common sources of water damage. If necessary, contact a plumber or contractor for help.
- Sinks: Check under the sink for leaks from water supply lines or drainpipes. If necessary, contact a plumber or contractor for help.
- Toilets: Clogs can result from too much toilet paper or objects such as hanging bowl deodorants. Also, some chlorine tablet cleaners may corrode internal plastic or rubber parts, leading to a leak. And those are just the logical reasons for toilet clogs—do factor in what your toddler may have decided to put in the toilet just to see it go down (and let’s hope it wasn’t a family pet). Again, don’t hesitate to call in a professional, although they probably won’t be able to save a flushed hamster.
The Laundry Or Utility Room
- Washing Machine: Check hoses regularly for bulging, cracking, fraying, and leaks around hose ends. Replace the hose if a problem is found or every 3 to 5 years as part of a proactive maintenance program. To help make sure the hose doesn’t kink, leave at least 4 inches (or 11 centimeters) between the water connection and the back of the washing machine. Be sure to read the manufacturer’s installation instructions carefully.
- Water Heater: Most water heaters last 8 to 15 years. Wet spots on the floor or a rusted tank may signal a leak. Water heaters should be installed on the lowest level of the home, next to a floor drain, or inside a drain pan piped to the floor drain.
If you have any problems with an emergency flooding situation in your home, please call us immediately on (877) 732-8471. After you check the list above, and you see some potential problems, please call us so we can give you an estimate on repair and restoration. Remember: Mold remediation is three times more expensive, on average, than correcting a water damage problem immediately!