Whether you’re considering buying or selling a home, or just evaluating your current home, it's essential to know the signs of potential water damage. Water damage from a flood, fire, or variety of leaks can cause structural problems and lead to the development of mold, which presents a health risk. Continue reading for tips from ServiceMaster Restore professionals on what signs to look out for on determining if a home has suffered water damage.
Outside The Home, Look For The Following Signs Of Water Damage:
• Check to see if the home or structure sits on the property's highest point, with the ground sloping away from the house. If it doesn't, water damage to the foundation may occur as water accumulates on the sides of your home and seeps in. Regular inspections by a professional will ensure that your foundation is in good shape and any issues are addressed.
• Walk around the exterior of the house. Check for downspouts that divert water away from the home and gutters that are intact and properly attached. A minor leak, a clog, or a needed repair could lead to costly damage to your property.
• Look for missing or cracked shingles on your roof. A leaking roof or missing/broken flashing can lead to leakage in the attic, which may lead to ceiling water damage. This roof damage may seem like a minor cosmetic issue, but it may become a prime entryway for water into your home when storms hit.
• Look at all the exterior windows or door frames. Is there any separation? Are there soft spots that may indicate window leaks? A slight separation could lead to humidity in your house, which may lead to mold. Regularly checking each window or door frame regularly will allow you to catch trouble areas before more significant problems evolve.
Inside The Home, Look For The Following Signs Of Water Damage:
• Water rings on the ceiling or walls pointing to a pipe leak. While rings may be easier to notice, keep an eye out for more minor water stains on the ceiling or walls, which are also common. Regularly go through your home and make a note of areas that are close to plumbing. If you cannot see any water rings or stains but suspect a leak, listen for water leaks within the walls at night when the ambient noise is at its lowest.
• Soft or sagging spots on the floor, especially near the tub, shower, and sinks. Leaking appliances needing repairs, such as dishwashers, washing machines, or a water heater may also cause the spots.
• Cracked or warped tile, laminate, or wood flooring. Water damage happens to all types of flooring and can lead to warping, splitting, or cracking as the water seeps in. While cracked or warped flooring may be easy to notice, you may not see wet flooring, especially if it's in the corners of the room or areas of your home that you don't frequent. Go out of your way to regularly inspect these areas and look for wet patches in carpeting rooms since minor water damage is often difficult to notice there.
• Look in the cabinet under the sink for watermarks, warping, and discoloration that may indicate leaking pipes. Damp cabinets or mold are sure signs of a leaking pipe nearby. Call a professional as soon as possible to get the issue fixed. This little repair cost may save you considerable costs and trouble later on.
• Pay attention to any new repairs to ceilings, walls, and windows. Are there patch jobs? Does there appear to be areas with heavier paint? These "quick fixes" may be hiding water damage spots.
• Check for rust on the water heater. These can indicate a previous or current leak, and any leak can mean water damage.
• Trust your sense of smell. If there is a mildew or musty odor, there is likely water damage, and now there may be a potential mold issue that will require mold remediation.
Find your nearest location or call us today at 1-800-RESPOND to find out how we can help you recover from water damage in your home.
Don’t Forget These Areas:
Check Your Attic For Damage. The attic is one of the areas in your home that is more likely to have water damage. An older or poorly maintained roof may lead to damage, leading to leaks during severe weather, such as storms. Snow or ice during winter can also accumulate, leading to further damage as it melts. Search for signs of water damage in the attic area, particularly around and near the chimney and roof vents where the roof planes join together, and the roof and the walls meet. Check the insulation; it should be dry and free from mold.
Water Damage In The Basement. Basement water damage happens to many homes and is among the most common problems for homeowners, whether from a leaking water heater, a foundation leak, or flood damage from a washing machine overflow. During heavy storms, the water may accumulate around your home, causing gradual water damage in your basement. The damage may also be caused by a sudden burst pipe inside or outside your home, leading to a flooded basement that requires repair. Regularly inspect your appliances, the plumbing, and the connections to ensure no repair is needed. Water damage in the basement can destroy flooring, drywall, furniture, and storage items. If the water damage isn't appropriately remediated, mold will likely develop, and a musty odor will permeate the space.
Use the checklist above to examine your home, paying close attention to the walls for signs of water stains that could point to an area that is leaking and requires professional help. If you discover water damage in your home, rely on the professional water damage remediation teams from ServiceMaster Restore. Our experts can assess the damage, create an action plan, and fully remediate the damage, restoring your space to its original condition.
For water damage support, find your nearest location and contact us today to find out how we can help you recover from water damage in your home.