The 3 Most Common Causes of Water Damage
Although residents in some states throughout the US must deal with floording from rising waters, it is rare that this happens in California. Unfortunately, there are many other ways water damage can wreak havoc on residential and commercial properties. Oftern times the damage is hidden, progresses slowly, and causes catastrophic issues by the time it is detected. Certain areas of a home are more prone to water damage than others. For instance, you’re likely to see spot a leaking dishwasher or overflowed toilet straight away. But areas we less frequently perform restoration services in might include crawl spaces, basements, & attics.
Problem under slabs or inside walls can remain hidden for weeks or even months in some cases. They go unnoticed until they have had time to manifest in ways that can be seen by the nake eye. This is why it’s so important for homeowners to keep an eye out for discoloration on walls and flooring, dampness, mold and mildew, as well as off-odors throughout their homes.
Most of the calls we get are from customers who believe that they have already indentified where the link is coming from, only to later find out that they are mistaken. The problem with water is it can travel easily and move a great distance before you even realize it’s there. Sometimes our customers need leak detection services to detect the source of the leak. Other times the source is obvious.
Below we have outlined some of the most common causes of water damage that we see here at H&L Restoration.
Roof & Window Leaks
Roof leaks are a homeowners nightmare. Not only are they an urgent issue that must be fixed immediately, they are usually a costly one. And when you consider the potential for water damage to occur before a roof leak is even detected, this cost only goes up. Checking gutters and downspouts on a quarterly basis is a good way to keep water from collecting on your roof and deteriorating it prematurely. It will also go a long way to prevent water making it’s way from a clogged gutter or downspout into your attic and eventually the ceiling of your home.
Often times it does good to check on the obscure elements we tend to forget about. Flashing that is laid around vent pipes and chimneys can wear with time. Does your home have windows? Of course it does. Checking the seals around windows and monitoring the amount of condensation that collects during the winter months is a good proactive measure.
Finally, when is the last time you’ve been on the roof? Checking for bad or missing shingles at least once per year is a good idea. This will go a long way to preserving the integrity of your home’s roof and ensuring you catch small issues before they turn into big ones.
Most homeowners are unaware of this fact but laundry washing machines are one of the leading causes of residential water damage and home flooding. Usually washing machines fail in 1 of 2 ways. First, they are likely to overflow when a drain gets clogged, or when worn and weathered hoses burst or become disconnected. Either issue can lead to hundreds of gallons of water spilling out into your home before you even know what’s happening. Imagine running a load of laundry and heading out to run a few errands only to come home to a flooded house. This is why it is a good idea to check connections, your washing machine drain, and hoses on a regular basis.
Hot water heaters are another under estimated cause of residential flooding. From leaking fittings and valves, to rust and deterioration of the tank, to extreme scenarios like a complete hot water heater rupture, there are really no shortage of ways a water heater can wreak havoc on your home.
Finally, another appliance that we see cause water damage in homes is the dishwashing machine. Much like laundry washing machines, clogged drain lines and damaged hoses are a leading cause.
Humidity and Condensation
Often times what may seem like some sort of plumbing or roofing leak at first, turns out to be condensation. A common problem we see in older home’s with single pain windows or poor insulation, and in bathrooms and showers. This is why it is so important to have properly functioning exhaust fans in kitchens and bathrooms in your home. Checking vents for obstructions, and ensuring your fans are working properly will do much in the fight against condensation that can lead to mold and mildew growth.
Condensation on windows can drip down and cause water damage on the frame and window sills. If you notice this often, consider using a dehumidifier or installing a whole-house dehumidifier.