Springtime can bring on one of the most disheartening experiences like finding flooding or extreme water damage to your treasured home. Every year about this time, we get many calls from our clients complaining that they have water damage in their cellars, the hot water tank has sprung a leak or that hoses have come loose on their wash machine and water is everywhere.
At Brownell Insurance, we know you want to protect what’s important. That’s why we’re offering these tips to help you prevent many of the most common causes of water damage. Please note that not all water damage is covered by your standard homeowners insurance. An old insurance rule of thumb is if the water that is coming into your home is falling – many times it is covered (Example: when an ice dam melts and the water seeps into your living room ceiling causing damage), but if the water rises (Example: water seeps in through your foundation and your basement is wet.) generally it is not covered. Water damage from high groundwater or excessive rain that damages your basement could be covered by flood insurance.
With just a little time and some effort, you can prevent a lot of heartache and hassle from water damage. Things you should do to prevent possible water damage are:
- Make sure your water pressure is not set too high. For just $6 or so, you can purchase a gauge that will help you test your pressure for the appropriate level, which should be set between 60 and 80 PSI.
- Flushing sediment from the hot water tank improves its efficiency and longevity. Also making sure a variable anode rod hangs in the tank will prevent your hot water tank’s insides from rusting out.
- Standard hoses on new appliances are not as durable as they used to be. So check your appliances. If they’re rubber, either replace them with longer lasting stainless steel braided hoses or replace them every three years.
- Keep water from leaking into the walls or floor of your bathroom by replacing cracked tiles and re-grouting when it’s needed.
- Examine the shingles on your roof. Worn, curled or missing shingles allow water in, so replace them as soon as noticed.
- Consider buying a water alarm, which can help you find leaks, or automatic shut-off mechanisms, which can help avoid bursts of your pipes.
- A lot of water damage occurs when you and your family are away from home. Make it a practice to avoid running the washing machine or dishwasher while you’re not at home.
- When you leave for vacations, turn off the water supply to all appliances.
- Keep up maintenance on all appliance hoses, because slow leaks from worn out hoses can cause major water damage.
We hope these pointers will ensure your home stays nice and dry this year!
Information for this blog was provided by Safeco Insurance.