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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Protecting Your Home Against Destructive Water Damage

11/3/2022 (Permalink)

man with bare feet lifting a box out of water Need help drying your home after water damage in your home? Call SERVPRO to mitigate your problem before it leads to secondary issues.

Tips for Avoiding Costly Post-Water Damage Effects

Water damage accounts for billions of dollars spent annually between recovery and reconstruction in the restoration industry. Protecting your home from this type of destruction means understanding aspects like appropriate insurance coverage and preventative steps to help you evade costly damages that require our SERVPRO experts. 

Coverage that Protects Against Water Damage

The standard homeowners or renter’s insurance policy can cover various types of water damage. It is a good rule of thumb that water coming from the top down, such as burst sprinklers, broken pipes, or roof ice dams, is often covered. However, some types of water intrusions and damages might not be covered. 

Sewage and backed-up drains impacting the floors of your home and key areas of the property do not often cover the expenses of cleanup without a homeowner maintaining a sewer backup rider. In this rule of thumb, water coming from the ground up, which would include natural flooding, would require a separate insurance policy exclusively for this type of damage, like coverage from the National Flood Insurance Program or secondary coverage offered by a company. 

Maintaining your home can effectively reduce or even prevent water disasters from compromising the structures. Despite the talented professionals of our SERVPRO team helping, even extending to our trusted reconstruction partners with Connecticut Reconstruction Services (CRS), it is better to avoid this needed recovery in the first place. 

Start with Protecting the Basement

  • Resealing - Foundation masonry and floor slabs can crack and separate over the years, leaving vulnerabilities for water penetration and seepage. The presence of water after rain could prove that the waterproofing measures of these masonry units or concrete formations have diminished. Roll-on paint sealants allow for added protection to safeguard against water intrusion.
  • How Does Water Drain Away? - Improper drainage and soil arrangements that cause water to flow back towards the foundation of a structure can increase the likelihood of penetration and damage. Even with a French drain system, hydrostatic pressures against the foundational block could expose developing vulnerabilities that worsen over time. 
  • Backflow Prevention Valves - Backups from the drain or the sewage system create a biohazard event for your property. An easy way to prevent this contamination and flooding is by installing backflow prevention valves on the outflow lines of your sewer system leaving the property. This allows matter to flow in only one direction. 

The Maintenance of Indoor Plumbing 

  • Annual Appliance Hose Inspections - Hoses on water-fed appliances in the house can seriously contribute to the water damage that Mount Kisco residences face. Refrigerators, washing machines, dishwashers, and water heaters have hoses and fittings connecting them to the primary water service lines. An annual inspection of these components can diagnose small leaks or deterioration before it becomes a devastating situation. It is recommended to replace hoses every 5-7 years, even if no visible signs of wear exist. 
  • Checking the Seal of Your Shower - There is a seal of caulking around your shower and tub where these elements connect to the rest of the building materials. When this deteriorates, water damage can result. Check this seal regularly for wear or degradation.
  • Shut Off Water When on Vacation - It is a crucial step to sever water to appliances when you intend to be away from the house for a vacation in case a break occurs when you are a thousand miles from home. Similarly, it is a good practice not even to leave the house when you have appliances like the dishwasher or washing machine running. 
  • Where is Your Water Main Shut Off? - An active water damage event, like a burst pipe, continually worsens until the water flow gets stopped. Knowing where your shutoff is can have you reach this valve quickly to avoid more significant damage to the house and the costs incurred with restoring it. 
  • Installing Pressure Release - Situations like freezing pipes increase the pressure in the lines, which results in bursting. A pressure release implementation relieves this buildup to avoid costly burst lines and subsequent water damage. 
  • Check Any Exposed Plumbing Pipes - Inspect connections, fittings, fixtures, and pipes for any cracks, leaks, and drips. Repairs made now can save you big in the future. 

Keep Your Belongings Safe from Water Damage

  • Waterproof Storage - Avoid storing items in areas prone to moisture damage, like the basement. It is good to get into using waterproof bins for off-season storage.
  • Valuables Around Water - Never place your treasures, keepsakes, or memorabilia where you could risk them being destroyed by water or subsequent mold damage.
  • Do Not Store Items on the Basement Floor - It is always a good practice to keep stored items off the floor to prevent ruin if flooding, water seepage, or sewage damage occurs. 
  • Know What You Have - An inventory list of your stored items saves time and stress when water damage threatens the property. 

How Your Home’s Exterior Plays a Part 

The outer defenses of your Westchester County property can significantly prevent the intrusion and seepage of water. A few steps can help you limit the need for professional restoration services like our SERVPRO team. 

  • Installing Guards for Gutters - Prevent clogging and gutter overflows that pour water down the side of your home or accumulate on the roof with guards. These attachments to the gutter system make it easy to keep this collection system clear and operating properly. 
  • Caulk and Seal - Homeowners should inspect windows and structural openings for any vulnerable points. Caulking around seams and window frames can avoid penetration and seepage.
  • Inspecting the Roof - Check for missing shingles or structural compromise that needs to get addressed. 
  • Check the Downspouts - Position these downspouts from your gutters so they direct water away from your home and its foundation. Eliminate debris around this opening to keep water from backing up or pooling. 

Preventing water damage, flooding, or even connected mold damage might be a challenge for homeowners. Following these suggestions can help to protect your property. If disasters strike, trust our experienced SERVPRO of Northern Westchester County restoration team. Call us anytime at (914) 241-8100.

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