Your home’s exterior takes a beating. Hail wallops glass windows. Erosion eats away at brick mortar. Debris weighs down gutters and clogs drain pipes. All this leads to one big, damp mess. Severe weather conditions are one of the biggest causes of water damage in the home. Unfortunately, adverse conditions inside your home can wreak just as much havoc.
Below are three common culprits of indoor water damage and tips to prevent them from striking.
Broken Pipes and Hoses
Luckily, Australia isn’t prone to frigid temperatures and freezing pipes. But leaky or cracked pipes can cause all sorts of mayhem. Pinholes or seepage around joints may seem insignificant, but they can hint at bigger problems to come. If left untreated, even the smallest fractures can grow to the point of bursting.
For a quick or temporary fix, you can buy pipe clamps at your local hardware store. These clamps are inexpensive and easy to install. Simply fasten the clamp to the pipe over the affected area. This seals off any punctures and adds reinforcement.
Supply lines and hoses are just as vulnerable to corrosion and rupture as pipes. Inspect whitegoods for hose wear or crimping. It’s common to find stress cracks where the hose bends sharply. Make sure all appliances have a proper and secure water connection.
Appliances to check may include:
- Air conditioning units
- Fridge icemakers
- Washing machines
- Water heaters
If you find any problems with your plumbing, take action to repair them immediately. It could mean the difference between cleaning up a small drip and taking out an insurance claim on a flooded home.
Extreme temperature changes inside your home can result in damp conditions. Humidity accumulates in rooms where appliances produce water vapour, such as the laundry or bath. Poor ventilation traps the humidity and causes condensation to collect and pool.
Regularly check your home for structural deficiencies. A draughty roof or leaky sub-floor can generate moisture in the top and ground storeys of your home. Mould, mildew and rot love to grow within these perpetually damp areas.
Mould spores are everywhere in small amounts and relatively harmless. But when spores come into contact with moisture, they spread fast. Exposure to large amounts of mould can lead to dozens of health issues. The top symptoms of a mould-related illness include:
- Eye irritation
- Nasal congestion or runny nose
- Respiratory problems, such as wheezing
- Skin sensitivity
Avoid these health risks by stopping mould growth. Ensure your home has adequate ventilation. Install several exhaust fans, and open windows to encourage airflow. For help with lingering toxins, call a professional. They have treatments to eliminate rot, fungus and associated pollutants.
Sump System Failure
Sump pumps prevent flooding by keeping the area under your house dry. This device is a small pump that removes water from a collection basin, usually located in the lowest ground level of a house. If your home is prone to high water volume, consider installing a backup pump.
A heavy storm may produce more water runoff than your primary pump can handle. And in case of a power outage, your primary pump won’t work at all. Keep the water out with a battery-powered backup pump. It automatically engages during a blackout or when your primary pump reaches capacity.
Dealing with water damage can be expensive and hazardous. It can quickly destroy the timber trim of your home, such as door and window frames. The excess moisture seeps into the wood, making it spongy, weak and vulnerable to rot. Early detection is key to avoiding these types of home and health catastrophes.
Be as cautious about protecting your home’s interior as you are its exterior. If you suspect water damage anywhere in your home, contact a professional immediately. They can prevent the spread of rot and assist you with home repairs.