Water damage claims have been growing faster than other claims in homeowners insurance. Most water damage risks in homes are associated with pipes and appliances, especially those that are not well maintained. Here’s a look at how you can prevent water damage from appliances in your home:
- Sinks, Showers, and Bathtubs
- Inspect the area under the kitchen and bathroom sinks with a flashlight every few months. If you notice signs of leaks or rust, call a plumber.
- Check the areas near showers and bathtubs for discoloration or swelling, which are indications that water leaks are present.
- Check for cracks or mold in the caulking and tile grout. If you notice these problems, recaulk the area.
- Water Heater
- Hot water tanks can leak when sediment falls to the bottom, rusting and cracking the tank. Check for signs of leaks around the water heater. Have the heater inspected by a professional every five years. Get a new water heater if yours is more than 10 years old.
- Keep your water heater on the lowest level of your home near a floor drain. If you can’t keep it there, make sure it’s placed inside a drain pan connected to the floor drain.
- Washing Machine and Dishwasher — Replace hoses to the washing machine and dishwasher every three years. Choose high-pressure, metal-mesh hoses — these are more durable and longer lasting than plastic hoses.
- Automatic Icemaker — Be careful when pulling and pushing the refrigerator back in to not damage or kink the hose or pipe. Check the hose or pipe regularly for signs of damage.
- Inspect appliance hoses every four months. Provide enough room around hoses to prevent kinks which can damage the hoses. Check for cracks, bulges or blisters. Make sure the connections are secure and feel for signs of moisture. Replace frayed or damaged hoses immediately.
- Know where the main water shutoff is. Everyone in the household should know the location of the shutoff valves for the main water supply and all water-drawing appliances, and how to turn them off.
- Shut off the main water supply if you’re going away from home for more than a week. Doing so can prevent unexpected leaks and water damage.
- Consider installing leak detection devices designed to help you learn about a leak before it does damage. These devices also shut off the water supply just in time to prevent severe water damage. Learn more here.
Air conditioner units are also susceptible to leaks that can lead to water damage. Learn how to prevent air conditioning water damage in this article and check out more tips to protect your home from water damage here. For flood water damage repair and water removal services, contact your local PuroClean office.