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3 Common Home Water Leaks And How To Prevent Them

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017

leaking washing machineWhen it comes to home water leaks, there aren’t a whole lot of surprises. Generally, the same leaks occur from a few common sources inside a house and resultant water damage follows a fairly predictable pattern. Here are three of the usual suspects when home water leaks happen and how to prevent them:

Water supply lines. A 1/2-inch indoor supply line feeding individual bathroom or kitchen fixtures is under anywhere from 40 to 80 pounds of water pressure. Slow leakage can silently saturate the immediate area causing structural rot and triggering mold growth. Total pipe rupture can inflict widespread, expensive damage. Regularly inspect all visible supply lines under and behind fixtures. No amount of seepage or dripping, no matter how minor, is acceptable. Contact a plumber if you see any signs of leakage.

Washing machine hoses. Connecting fittings on the back of the washer to hot and cold water valves on the wall, many original-equipment washing machine hoses are cheap rubber. Over time, these hoses become brittle and may crack and leak or, worse, rupture without warning. Don’t wait for signs of deterioration. Replace rubber washing machine hoses now, before damage occurs, with flexible braided stainless steel lines that offer long expected service life and reduce the danger of water damage.

Air conditioner overflows. A central AC unit produces many gallons of condensation on a humid summer day. If everything works, the condensate drip pan under the indoor air handler drains condensation into the household sewer system. If the system becomes clogged, however (algae growth is a frequent cause) the pan quickly overflows and spills water every time the AC cycles on. This can cause substantial structural water damage before the problem is even noticed. Schedule annual AC preventive maintenance including drip pan cleaning. During cooling season, check the pan frequently for standing water—a warning sign of a developing clog. If water is accumulating, shut off the system and contact an HVAC contractor immediately.

For more about how to prevent home water leaks or deal with the aftermath if one occurs, contract the water damage professionals at Rytech, Inc.

3 Basic Plumbing Maintenance Tips For Your Home

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

corroded pipeSerious indoor water damage can result from something as simple as neglecting basic plumbing maintenance. The water supply lines inside your house carry water at an average of 60 pounds per square inch. That’s more than enough pressure to inundate your home in a matter of minutes. Other less dramatic but chronic plumbing problems can increase monthly water bills and cause fixtures and appliances to perform less efficiently.

Observing a few basic plumbing maintenance practices is always better than dealing with the inconvenience and expense after the fact if water damage occurs. Here are three things you can do on your own.

  1. Look for leaks. No amount of water supply line leakage—including tiny pinholes or minor oozing at joints—is acceptable. In fact, these are often warnings of internal corrosion which could trigger a total pipe rupture at any time. Inspect water supply lines anywhere they are visible, including beneath sinks and in the basement or crawl space, for dripping or seepage. If you find any, call a plumber immediately.
  2. Check washing machine hoses. Ruptured rubber washing machine hoses are frequent culprits when unexpected indoor water damage strikes. Regularly inspect the hoses that connect to hot and cold water faucets on the wall behind the machine. Look for cracks and test flexibility. If the hoses feel hard and brittle, replace them now. Braided steel water lines are a superior, longer-lasting replacement than rubber.
  3. Inspect the water heater. Look for signs of leakage underneath. Any water dripping from the bottom of the unit is evidence of internal corrosion and an impending tank rupture that could flood the house. Also check the temperature and pressure relief valve on the side or top of the water heater for dribbling. Open the valve by lifting the spring-loaded handle and verify that you can see or hear water spurt out, then allow the valve to snap shut. Make sure the valve seals properly afterwards. Report any tank leakage or a dribbling relief valve to a qualified plumber.

Ask the experts at Rytech for more basic plumbing maintenance tips to prevent water damage.

Sump Pump Maintenance Keeps the Risk of Malfunction and Water Damage at Bay

Monday, October 27th, 2014

Sump Pump MaintenanceBecause the basement is the lowest point in the house, a sump pump helps prevent water damage from both below and above. Proper sump pump maintenance makes sure the sump pump will be ready to do the job when it’s needed. (more…)