Category: Eco-Friendly Future Written by Alison Pearson
Water is a common cause of damage to homeowners’ properties. It’s an essential resource in our homes, but it can cause quite a bit of damage if an appliance or pipe starts malfunctioning. Knowing how to deal with leaks and problems with water drainage will help you mitigate any damage to your home. Here are some tips to help you avoid any water damage to the property.
Check your roof
When it comes to water damage, the roof is the most commonly affected area. It bears the brunt of rain, snow, and hail, and the occasional shingle can crack or breakaway. When this happens, water starts seeping into your attic and causes mould and mildew. Over time, the roof itself can start to rot and lose its integrity. It only leads to more water damage throughout various parts of your home.
If you suspect that your roof is leaking, you should inspect it inside and out. Roof problems start small, so you'll have to do a thorough inspection if the problem started recently. If you determine that not all shingles are in place or that the flashing has been dislodged, it might be time to call someone in for roof repairs. The longer you let the roof leak, the worse the damage will get.
The water doesn’t need to come from outside to damage your property. Some of the appliances in our homes use quite a bit of water, and when they malfunction, leaks are likely. The ones you should pay attention to are dishwashers and washing machines. If they start leaking, you could be looking at a lot of water in your kitchen or bathroom.
The good news is that you can detect problems pretty early on. These areas don’t normally have pools of water, so you’ll take note of a leak immediately. Once this happens, you should get the appliance repaired as soon as possible. These leaks can get bigger over time, and you don’t want to procrastinate and cause a small flood.
Check for mould growth
While appliance malfunctions leave a noticeable trail of water, most other types of water damage are more subtle. You might not notice that something’s wrong until it’s too late. This type of damage can creep up façades, roofing, and even basement walls without showing too many signs. The good news is that there are some early signs if you know where to look.
Mould is a pretty obvious indicator of extra moisture. It tends to grow in damp environments, and you shouldn’t have many of those in your home. If you see mould growing on walls or in corners, you know something isn’t quite right. Inspecting the areas that show mould and any adjacent areas would be a good idea in this situation. If you can’t detect the source of the moisture, it might be time to call in a professional to do it.
When cleaning the mould, try to clean in an environmentally-friendly way, as harsh chemicals can pollute local waterways.
Clear the gutters
Another common cause for leaks is a problem with the gutter system. Gutters might not be connected to the piping of your home directly, but they are still part of the pipe system. They help divert water from your roof and façade, which is critical when it rains or snows.
Since they’re exposed to the outside elements, they often get clogged by leaves and various debris. When this happens, you can expect lots of water to pool up on your roof and damage the exterior. Getting a contractor to clear the gutters is always an option, but you can also do it on your own. Make sure you clean the gutters every couple of days during Autumn, as leaves can pile up quickly and cause water damage.
If the exterior walls get damaged after gutters clog, it’s recommended that you use durable cement rendering during repairs. That will enable extra protection from water damage in the future.
Find the water shut-off valve
When it comes to preventing water damage, the water shut-off valves are a homeowner's best friend. If there's a leak and the water is coming from the pipe system, turning them off should be your top priority. It might seem surprising, but plenty of homeowners don't know where their water shut-off valves are located. It tends to happen because they don't use these valves often or at all.
Depending on how your pipe system is set up, there can be multiple water shut-off valves present. Knowing which one controls which section is crucial. Consult the plumbers that worked on your home to learn more about the pipes and how they can be shut off.
There are plenty of things you can do to reduce the chance of water damage to your property. Diagnosing and taking care of roof leaks and pipe malfunctions is a crucial first step, but you also need to know how to repair sections that might have taken damage. Consider some of the tips we’ve covered above, and you’ll know just what to do in these situations.
Alison Pearson is an interior design student. She is a content creator, and her ultimate passion is business and marketing. She is also a bibliophile and her favourite book is "The Sound and the Fury" by William Faulkner. Follow her on Twitter.
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