5 Tips to Avoid Water Damage While You’re Away from Home
With the holidays approaching rapidly, your travel calendar is likely getting pretty full. Family affairs, get-togethers with old friends, and even the occasional work outing all mean good memories and fun traditions. Although the thrill of travel can be exhilarating, long periods of time away from your home may leave you in the dark about problems that arise while you are gone. Water damage problems can begin slowly, and their effect can range anywhere from a minor annoyance to severe danger. To help avoid a few holiday headaches, we’re going over five of the best tips you can use now to prevent water damage and keep your holiday spirits bright.
1. Turn Them Off - Completely
If you know that you’re going to be away for an extended period of time, power off and unplug appliances that are hooked up to a water line. That way, you won’t be wasting electricity, and any water build-up will be less likely to cause a leak.
This isn’t always a practical solution, particularly for refrigerators that are likely full of food. An easier approach is to turn the water valve itself all the way off. This prevents water from reaching your in-home machines in the first place. With this in place, any leaks that you may not know about have no ability to cause you more problems while you’re gone.
2. Know Your Waterways
It’s always a good idea to understand how water flows in and out of your home. This fact doubles in importance when you’re traveling regularly. Anticipating where issues might arise can help you stop them in their tracks. By shutting off unnecessary water supplies every time you leave, you can decrease the chances of a leak springing up while you’re gone.
Start by making a cursory inspection of your supply lines. Plastic pipes are more prone to cracks than metal ones and will likely require reinforcement or replacement at some point down the road. If your pipes start to show their age, consider swapping them for stainless steel, or another sturdy and long-lasting material.
3. Keep ‘Em Shiny
Your appliances are also likely due for a good visual once-over. Look for any potential weak points, rusty pieces, or loose bits. Pay attention to any strange noises that may come from your machines, especially if you can’t identify the source. Sudden changes in how a machine sounds when running may point to bigger underlying issues.
It’s an undeniable truth of homeownership: all devices age and inevitably require replacement. If you think it may be time for an upgrade, get in contact with a qualified appliance vendor and installation specialist. Water heaters, washing machines, dishwashers, and refrigerators are the main culprits when it comes to water damage. As an added bonus, upgrading these appliances will likely produce energy savings for your home.
4. Get Help Where You Can
Water damage can sometimes be tricky to spot with the naked eye, especially if you’re not always home. A worthwhile addition you can make to your plumbing system is a smart leak detector or two. These devices will alert you to any leaks that may spring up while you’re out of the house, including areas that may be hiding in the nooks and crannies of your home.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to people you know for help with preventing water damage while you travel. Consider hiring a house-sitter if you’ll be gone for more than a few days, or ask someone to look in on your home every so often. With a fresh set of eyes, they may notice something that would have slipped under your radar!
5. Don’t Go It Alone
If you do notice a problem in one of your appliances or pipes, you may feel tempted to fix it on your own. However, DIY resources you can find online vary wildly in quality and legitimate application. Before you know it, you may make the problem worse, or cause a new one. Contact a professional as soon as you notice something wrong so they can address it safely and efficiently – the first time.If you see water damage in your home, call AdvantaClean. For over 20 years, our experts in mold remediation and water damage restoration have been helping clean up residential homes and businesses. To see how the professionals handle water damage clean-up and other mold-related problems, drop us a line.