Most homeowners think that “water damage” is something that only happens to other people. You can see where this is going. This is the wrong mentality and ignoring its presence is exactly the reason why water damage is often so destructive to a home’s health and structure.
Water damage isn’t the most common of a home’s ills, but it is one of the most dangerous to ignore. Water damage often develops slowly and in places where you can’t see it.
To help you understand why you shouldn’t ignore water damage and what you should do if you find it in your home we’ll take a look at these three things:
- The sources of water damage in your home
- What happens if you ignore water damage and
- What to do if you find it in your house
Sources of Water Damage in Your Home
(Water Damage You CAN See)
Watermark on the Ceiling
Cracked or damaged siding/roofing is a recipe for water damage. Most homeowners have probably seen “stains” on the ceiling before. Let’s be clear: this is BAD for houses. Watermarks are a clear indication that water has found its way into your home. Ceiling damage is especially dangerous because water migrates, which means that gravity is pulling water downwards from the ceiling, corrupting the walls and floors of your house.
Soft spot on the wall
Soft spots merit the same warning and advice as watermarks. If you see discoloring or feel a weak, saggy spot on the wall, do NOT ignore it. It’s a clear sign that water, or at least, moisture is collecting behind your wall, which can lead to mold and structural damage.
Ever had to grab a couple of pots and buckets during a rainstorm to put under your dripping ceiling? You’re not alone. But that doesn’t mean everything is fine with your home. Your house should be able to withstand nature’s forces and you need to identify the problem if it fails to stand strong.
(Water Damage You CAN’T see)
The worst mold infestations or cases of water damage are often the ones you can’t see. They lie behind walls, beneath carpet, laminate, tile & wood flooring and in crawl spaces, attics or even air ducts.
This is one of the most common places for water damage. Your pipes constantly have liquids running through them, so it’s no surprise that they are susceptible to bursts and leaks. Old and rusty pipes are especially vulnerable to malfunction. Make sure to check your pipes regularly.
The answer above applies here. It gets special mention, though, because toilets and sink drains are the most frequent victims of burst or leaky pipes. Check them frequently.
Most people overlook this one. A broken or malfunctioning garbage disposal doesn’t just simply mean that it is out of service; it is a sign that you should check your pipes for blockage from food and other disposable waste that goes down your drain.
Attics, Crawl Spaces, Basements
These three are silent killers because they are rarely visited in most homes. However, mold frequently finds its way into these three areas. In basements, mold builds up due to moisture seeping through foundations. In the attic, moisture collects on the underside of the roof, causing the attic to get moist and musky.
Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning (HVAC)
Water and moisture can also build up in the HVAC system of your home. Air conditioning units and systems are especially dangerous in the summertime, since they are often running all day and, as a result, are likely producing moisture and condensation. Monitor them regularly and consider an annual service checkup.
What Happens If You Ignore Water Damage?
Basically, anywhere that there is water damage there will be mold. Unfortunately, mold is hard to detect because it grows in places that are hidden or hard to see. Even more, if you ignore water damage, mold infestations spread deep within your home’s structure, making it nearly impossible to eliminate it without the help of a specialist.
Here are some signs of mold:
- The development of allergies, asthma or other health problems
- A strong musty smell
- Water stains on drywall or ceiling
If your water damage is severe, this one is costly. The framework of your house is seriously damaged by persevering contact with moisture. Wood beams will rot and steel or metal pieces will rust, leading to costly repairs behind the walls, under the floors and above the ceilings in your home.
Here are some signs to help identify potential structural damage:
- Roof leaks
- Plumbing leaks
- Sewer line leaks
What Should You Do If You Find Water Damage in Your Home?
If you find water damage or signs of mold or moisture in your home, then you should try to identify the source immediately. Never put it off until later, risking the possibility of even greater damage to the structural integrity of your home, as well as the health and safety of those within the home.
Once you have identified (or at least attempted to discover) the source, you should contact a home improvement specialist immediately to receive advice on what steps you should take in the repair and safeguard of your home.
Illinado Home Solutions, LLC are experienced professionals waiting to help you fix or safeguard your home. Our crew is waiting to help you keep your home and family healthy. Our company specializes in remodels and renovations, which means we are dependable for all your home improvement or repair needs.
Contact Us today for a FREE consultation or FREE estimate.