With all of the recent flooding that homeowners have been facing in the news, many people are wondering how they can protect their home and their belongings from water damage.
By identifying, fixing, and maintaining problem areas, you can avoid taking on excessive damage in the face of rain or flooding. Here are some tips that will help you to keep your home safe from water damage throughout the year.
Check Walls for Damage
The exterior walls of your home undergo a lot of abuse over time, and this wear and tear can leave your home vulnerable to the elements. A couple of times per year, you should wander around your backyard deck and house. Look for any cracked siding, broken brick, or worn masonry along the side of the building.
You should also keep an eye out for any open or uncovered openings used for wiring, plumbing, cables, and other devices. Any opening into the house should be well-sealed using foam or calk. Exhaust vents don’t have to be sealed, but they should sit flush with their gaskets.
Seal Doors and Windows
With even light rain, water can seep in through poorly sealed openings and lead to interior damage and mold. To avoid home water damage all doors and windows should close with a snug fit, while locks and handles should be sealed. Caulking should be tight and uncracked.
If you notice any caulking strips looking broken or weather-worn, make sure to replace them to reseal problem areas. If you see condensation accumulating on the interior of any windows, it may be because they aren’t properly sealed and you may need to make some changes to the outside of your windows.
Maintain Outdoor Drainage Systems
In order to protect the foundation of your home, you need to ensure that water is flowing away from the property. All exterior downspouts should discharge water at least five feet away from the foundation wall of your house. If your downspout is too close, you can replace it with a flexible and durable plastic model. The terrain around your home should also encourage water to drain away using slopes and grading.
Trim Nearby Trees
Tree limbs not only trap moisture against your home, but they can also cause damage to siding and gutters that can lead to water damage. You should keep trees trimmed back so that the branches don’t make contact with your house. You should also keep an eye on larger trees’ root systems, as they can cause damage to piping and septic systems.
Mold and water damage cost the insurance industry $2.5 billion dollars each year. The average cost of a home water damage insurance claim is $6,965. Water damage can cause expensive and even dangerous damage to your home. Luckily, with some easy home maintenance, you can ensure that your property is safe the next time a storm is on the horizon.