Water Damage Detection
Water damage in the home that you can see is one thing, water damage in the home that you cannot see is quite another. Visible water damage may be swiftly and effectively dealt with to prevent it from getting worse, while unseen water damage goes merrily on its way causing hundreds or thousands of dollars in damages before it is finally discovered and dealt with.
Water damage may occur for a variety of reasons, from minor leaks caused by unsecured piping or broken window seals to major problems like flooding caused by overflowing sinks and tubs. Other weather conditions may cause problems, such as ice dams on your roof or excess water from rainfall getting into your basement or crawlspace. Many of these problems will not be apparent until you actually go and look for them.
A proactive investigation is the single best method for combating water damage and preventing it from gaining a foothold. Locate the source of the problem and shut it off, then begin repairs on the damage. The quicker your response, the less severe the impact on your property is likely to be.
The first step in the process is to examine the exterior of your home, most notably the gutter and downspout system. These are designed to channel excess water away from the home, and if they are overflowing, that is a sure sign that you have a clog somewhere. Gutters may often become clogged with debris, leaves, or other items that happen to fall on the roof. Gutter guards are inexpensive and can keep the flow free and clear.
You should also look for any signs of water accumulation or buildup around the property.
Learn to read and decipher your water meter. If there is a sudden spike in your bill, then there is a good chance you have a leak somewhere. You can always test this theory by turning off the water supply and then checking a reading again a few hours later. If there is any variation, then you have sprung a leak somewhere.
Wooden floors will show very obvious signs of water damage, such as staining, softening, or warping. Home appliances may also spring leaks, which means the flooring and drywall in the immediate vicinity may be damaged.
Broken seals on doors or windows may cause staining or softening of the wall around them. Broken window seals are one of the most common causes of water damage.
The key to avoiding costly water damage repair bills is to stay ahead of the problem. Continuously inspecting your home wards off costly damage and expensive repairs. When you discover a problem, correct it. Remember that water damage will not get better on its own. It will only continue to worsen until it has been treated properly and thoroughly.