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This Old House - Do-it-Yourself

Make Sure Your Home is Waterproofed

Written by Posted On Wednesday, 21 December 2016 07:13
water damage water damage

Pipes bursting, leaking junctures, and cracked foundations can all contribute to flooding and water damage in the home. Much of this damage can be prevented with routine checks and repairs. Is your home prone to water damage? Each of these checks takes a few minutes, but they can save you thousands of dollars in repair costs if you catch the problem early.



Let's take a look at the basement


Water goes toward the lowest point in the home, making basements a natural water attractor. While you might not think about the basement that often, putting these safeguards in can stop further damage.


Install a sump pump


If you are in a flood-prone area, sump pumps are a necessity for your basement. They go into action when water gets into your basement and raises a float up to a certain level. The water gets pumped out and away from your home. When you have a working sump pump, you minimize the damage that can occur in a basement flood.


Check for leaks in your basement walls


One sneaky way water gets in is through cracks in your basement walls. Fortunately, there are professionally-applied sealants which can be used on those walls to seal up those cracks and weak spots to prevent the water from flowing in through the point of least resistance.


Inspect your piping


Leaky pipes are one of the more common causes of water damage. Look at any exposed plumbing and check it for leaks. Look both at the pipes and along routes where water would flow downward toward your basement. Any discoloration or soft spots on the floor or along baseboards are a sign that there is a leak somewhere.


Other places to inspect


Look at your dishwasher and washing machine


If you've ever come home to a flooded kitchen or laundry room, you know the value of checking your dishwasher and washing machine for leaks and poor connections. You may have to move these away from the wall, but it will be worth the effort if you find that your appliances are leaking water. Check washers and o-rings once a year for damage and replace them if they are cracked.


Ceilings and Roofs


Look up to your ceiling to see if there are places that are discolored or moldy. This is evidence of water damage. A growing mold spot is a sure sign that water is leaking in from your roof. Get that fixed asap and cut out the moldy spot before it spreads more damage.


Your home is definitely not the place to take chances when it comes to water damage. Take a few extra minutes to look around your home and pay special attention to repairing places which are leak-prone. Fixing the little things now prevents the big floods from coming and ruining your home and your bank account.

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