In “What is The True Cost of Water Damage,” we discussed all of the various ways that water can work to wreck your home. Water can target everything: your roof, your foundations, your walls, the siding, and your windows.
In fact, if you let water have free reign in your home long enough, you won’t have much left, because that list pretty much covers the entire house from top to bottom.
On top of all of that, unchecked water damage ensures that your home will suffer from an infection of mold and mildew, which comes with its own set of headaches, heartaches, and health hazards.
Causes of Water Damage
You already know that we’re going to tell you that a poorly built or maintained gutter system causes water damage. It does, and lots of it.
However, since that one was a given we’ll spend a few more minutes discussing the other forms of water damage instead.
Yes, burst pipes can happen here in the Tampa Bay metro area. Every now and then we wake up to frigid mornings where temperatures have dropped well below freezing.
It only takes a few hours for pipes to burst. Ironically, this is more likely to happen here in the south than in the north where such temperatures are a consistent threat. That’s because a home that was built in a cold climate was designed for a cold climate, pipes and all…and ours wasn’t.
You can get a full list of instructions that will tell you how to protect your pipes here.
This can include leaky tubs, damaged, leaking toilets, problems with appliances like washing machines, and more. If it uses water in your home then it definitely has the potential to cause major problems, so make sure you get a plumbing inspection done each and every year.
Did you know that a lot of modern heaters and ACs work by collecting condensation from the air? This is why you should have your AC drained twice a year. Otherwise, the water will start backing up inside of your air ducts, which means water damage is sure to follow.
Floods and hurricanes are both persistent dangers here in Florida. You of course can’t do much to prevent this type of water damage. You can only keep a really good insurance policy, and deal with the problem when it arises.
How to Spot Water Damage
First, you need to check the places where water is flowing in your home. Your gutters are a good starting point.
Are your gutters overflowing when it rains? Are there big puddles of water right next to your foundation?
If so, you need to address the gutter situation right away. Check for signs of decay or rot in your foundation, siding, and windows, too, as you might have some serious repairs to make. Hopefully you’ll catch the gutter problems in time to avoid this.
Next, check your pipes and your faucets. Do you smell an unpleasant damp odor when you open up your cabinets? If so, you’ve got a problem somewhere.
You should also check appliances. Hoses, in particular, can become problematic. A hose that’s gone brittle is surely leaking, even if there’s no water around when you check it.
Finally, look for dark spots on your walls, ceilings, or carpets. Again, you might not feel any dampness or wetness at the moment you check them, but discoloration means there’s a slow leak at work somewhere. If the discoloration is on your ceiling then you are going to want to call a roofer to check your roof. A slow leak can become an uncontrollable fast leak in the very next severe storm.
How to Deal With Water Damage
Hopefully, you’ve lifted the prevention tips from this article, such as checking your gutters, protecting your pipes, and keeping your appliances in good repair. And hopefully, as a result, you’re less likely to suffer from any water damage that isn’t storm-based.
However, the storm-based water damage is always a possibility. It’s also possible that you’ve alraedy got some water damage in your home. Either way, you need to know what to do about it.
First, you’ll need to kill any mold that’s begun growing as a result of the water damage. You might be able to take care of it yourself with a bit of bleach or vinegar. It’s more common to have to call a mold specialist, however, if that doesn’t do the trick.
Second, of course, you’ll need to repair whatever is causing the water damage. You will also have to repair and replace anything that got damaged. If there is any standing water, this will have to be mopped up, as it can’t be allowed to remain.
Obviously, all of these repairs can get quite expensive. That’s a good argument for performing the routine maintenance and check-ups that keeps all of this from happening. Obviously water damage can also make your home unlivable for vast periods of time…another reason for doing whatever you can to avoid this nasty experience altogether.
We help you prevent water damage in your home by installing seamless aluminum gutters in Ocala, New Port Richey, Homosassa and the rest of the Tampa Bay metro area. Contact us for a free estimate today.