More than 40% of all home-related insurance claims are due to water damage. In order to prevent water damage affecting your home, it is important to be proactive and protect yourself from possible leaks and floods.
Here are a few tips to help keep your home dry:
Pipes, Drainage & Ventilation
- Arrange to have your pipes and plumbing inspected every 6 months to ensure that there are no leaks or cracks that are in need of repair.
- Insulate pipes to prevent freezing in the colder months. Frozen pipes can burst if they are not insulated when the weather starts getting warmer.
- Install an accessible backflow valve to prevent water backup. These valves close automatically if the sewer backs up and can prevent thousands of dollars in damage.
- Check for any kinks or bends in copper or plastic lines.
- Repair any leaking or dripping faucets.
- Make sure that the air in your home, especially in the bathroom and kitchen, is well ventilated to avoid condensation.
- Know where your water shut-off valve is and how to turn it off.
- Do not leave your washing machine in use when you are not at home.
- Leave 2–4 inches of space between the back of the washing machine and the wall to prevent kinking near the connections. Also, make sure that the connections are tight.
- If you have a sump pump in your home, ensure that nothing is blocking it and that it can flow freely when it is emptied. If the pit/hole is not kept clear of debris, it can get caught, clog up, and cause sewer backup. It is also recommended that you perform test-runs on your sump if it does not get used on a regular basis.
Roofs, Gutters/Downspouts & Foundations
- Annual inspections on your roof can ensure that any missing or loose shingles are seen and replaced accordingly.
- Check for any pooling liquid around your foundation and find a way to lead it away from the house. Melting snow or heavy rain can cause the water to sit next to your home and could contribute to a leak.
- Gutters and downspouts should be kept clear of debris. You can also use downspout extensions to place the run-off as far from your home as possible.
- When installing drywall, allow a gap of approximately 1 inch between the floor and the drywall so that it is less likely to soak up any water that may be on the floor.
- If you are installing tiles in a basement, bathroom or laundry area, cut the tile into thirds and run it along the bottom of the drywall instead of a traditional wooden trim. This will help to seal the bottom of the drywall so in case of a minor overflow from a sink, toilet, shower or washing machine, the water will not seep onto the trim or drywall.
Review your insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for any additional damages. While some home plans may not insure items such as overland flooding or sewer backup, you have the option to add extra coverage. It is important to know what your policy includes so that in the event of any damage occurring you will experience fewer surprises. These are just some of the preventative steps you can take to lower the chances of water damage to your home or business.
Please Note: These TIPs are professionally-informed suggestions only. It is important to always use caution and treat any affected environments and/or materials as contaminated. On Side Restoration Services is one of Canada’s leading and privately-owned restoration companies. Since 1979 we have been on your side, earning trust and credibility among clients and business to business partners along the way. Restoring damaged homes and businesses and often the contents within, around the clock/365 days a year, is what we do.