As a homeowner, you naturally want to care for your home. This includes regular maintenance and checkup to prevent natural and other elements from destroying your property.
One of the things you need to do is to ensure your home is safe from any water damage.
Proactively preventing water damage to your property not only helps increase its lifespan but also boosts its value if you plan on selling your home. Otherwise, you will face many problems, including costly repairs, structural damages, and tedious insurance claims.
Forbes reported that water damage is one of the most common and expensive types of homeowners insurance claims. Every year, one in fifty homeowners files a claim for water damage insurance.
There are various reasons why your property is prone to water damage. Incidents could be due to natural or man-made causes. Oftentimes, this water damage could have been prevented with regular check and maintenance.
Essential Practices to Prevent Water Damage to Your Home
- Mind Your Drainage System
Your drainage system is the number one thing you need to deal with to prevent water damage to your property.
Install a drain guard on all your plug holes to minimize the amount of waste getting washed down your sink and floor drain. These small grate-like disks made of either metal or plastic helps collect debris which you can then throw into a trash can.
Wash out your drain pipes with hot water at least once a week as well. Doing this helps remove hardened oils in your drain, which could cause clogging, leaks, and even pipe breakage in the long run.
- Check Your Roof, Gutters, and Downspouts
Your roof is the first line of defense that protects you from natural elements like rain, heat, and wind. Help prolong your roof’s lifespan and avoid expensive repairs by having it checked and maintained at least twice a year — one during the spring and another during autumn.
Ensure that there are no shingles on your roof that are loose, missing, or chipped. Any of these issues could allow rainwater to seep inside your house, damaging its internal structures.
Your gutters and downspouts need attention as well. Downspouts should be at least five to six feet away from your house. Check for any leaks and clogs. Some homeowners opt for seamless gutters as it requires little maintenance and lasts long.
- Improve Soil Structure
Add soil around your foundation at least six inches in a 10-foot span. The downward slope of the soil encourages water to flow away from your house. This is especially important if you have some crawl space since a damp environment is a breeding ground for molds, mildew, and insects.
- Mind the Trees and Vegetation around Your Property
Thriving shrubs and trees around your house increase your property’s curb appeal. However, you need to carefully plan what trees or shrubs to plant as it might cause considerable damage to your utility pipes and drainage system. Your trees should be planted at least 20 feet away from your house. You may also opt for smaller pieces if your lawn is not big enough.
- Plan Your Irrigation System
Irrigation systems and sprinklers make it easier for you to take care of your greenery outdoors. However, you need to pay close attention and make sure they aren’t causing water to accumulate around your house. Otherwise, your foundation would suffer severely, allowing water to get in through chips and cracks.
- Check the Water Main
Most homeowners do not know the location of the water main in their house. Knowing your water’s main location is crucial to prevent or mitigate water damage disasters. Sometimes, no matter how much preparation you make, water damage can occur, and turning off the main water line is the only way to prevent further damage.
- Check Your Appliances
You need to check your appliances for any hidden water leaks.
Among the frequently reported water damage loss is due to washing machine leaks. Consider replacing your hoses at least every five years to avoid any mess and expensive damages to your home.
You also need to inspect your heating and cooling system since it essentially relies on water to control the temperature of your house. It would be best to have a company that provides HVAC services on the line to maintain it regularly.
- Check Your Attic
A lot of homeowners rarely set foot on their attics. Most often, it is already too late to address water damage in that area of the house. Leaking from your roof moistens the wooden structures in your attic, making it a prime environment for mold growth. Make sure to check this area from time to time.
- Do Some Maintenance on Your Windows and Doors
Badly fitted doors and windows allow rainwater to slip into your house easily. This can cause damage to your drywall and window frames. To remedy this, consider applying caulk on any holes and cracks. You should also consider investing in weather strips to properly seal doors and windows that are difficult to close tightly.
Keep in mind that you need to fix leaks and burst pipes around your property as soon as possible. Doing so will save you from any headache of costly repairs and cumbersome insurance claims.