3 Simple Steps to Avoid Water Damage

flood damage repairSpringtime brings more than sunshine and rainbows. It also hits thousands of homeowners every year with water damage – losses that can be prevented with a few simple prevention measures. For starters, make sure that everything around your house that can drain water, does. That means ensuring:
  1. Downspouts are on.
  2. Gutters are clean.
  3. Your yard is sloped away from the house.
  4. Window wells are clear of debris that can cause water buildup.

Two prime prevention measures

After that, homeowners can save themselves a mountain of grief with two prevention measures that can allay a host of problems – checking their sump pumps and turning off their household water supplies during extended trips. Sump pump check. Checking to make sure your sump pump is operating usually means nothing more than pouring a bucket of water into the sump pump well to see if the pump kicks in automatically. If it doesn’t, check the pump’s rod or float to see if it is sticking. If it is, give it a simple jiggle – sump pumps that haven’t run for a year or two sometimes stick from simple underuse. If that doesn’t work, you need a repair or a new pump. Fortunately, a good sump pump will run you only between $150 and $250, depending on the horsepower. And the horsepower does matter. A ¼- or ½-HP sump pumps doesn’t really do the job; a ¾- or 1-HP pump is what you want. “A quarter-horse is a little pump that you’re not really serious about,” says Steve Poyner, vice president and general manager for LDR Construction Services Inc., Rockford, Ill., a provider of cleaning and restoration services for fire and water damage. “Do something that’s going to take care of the job if we get a prolonged rain.” The price difference between a ½-HP and 1-HP pump is negligible – perhaps as low as $100 – compared to the damage suffered in a basement if the pump can’t keep up. Turn off the water. Another simple but underused water damage prevention tool is turning off the water supply to your house before you leave for an extended trip, even two or three days. Poynor says broken refrigerator water lines cause more damage than almost any other culprit. To nix that possibility, just turn off the main water supply, then open up any spigot to relieve the pressure from all the house’s pipes. For wintertime trips, just remember: Keep the heat on, turn the water off. Call in the pros. So what do you do when you take all the right measures, and natural forces like hydrostatic pressure still conspire with a small crack in your foundation to fill your basement with 2 or 3 inches of water? Well, you get some help. For homeowners looking to clean up flood damage or find water damage repair services, calling a service provider like LDR can save quite a few headaches, from not-quite-dry carpets to slogging through insurance company red tape. In the event of water damage, especially in a finished basement with water-absorbing carpet and ceiling tiles, a professional cleaning and restoration company can bring in high-speed fans that blow up to 160 mph, professional-grade dehumidifiers and the testing equipment to make sure that those tools are actually drying out your basement. The service company will also remove damaged articles from the basement, clean them and dry them – all the way down to freeze-drying critical documents and removing individual photos from albums and drying them in a drying chamber. And because insurance companies are the ones actually paying the bills, your professional water damage repair company will act as a liaison to insurance adjusters so that homeowners get what they need and the insurance company gets what it wants. “It’s your house, you hired us; but who’s paying us?” Poynor says. “The insurance companies are paying us because most people don’t have a pocketful of money to pay for it. I know I don’t. You depend on your insurance. You want to play by their rules and you tend to get better results.” Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net Free eBook shows how to make a home disaster plan  


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