Water doesn’t look that dangerous when you see gentle waves washing onto a sandy beach or you drink a bottle after a long jog. However, it’s one of the most destructive forces on Earth: floodwaters can wash away forests and whole houses, rivers can carve deep ravines into the ground, and water erosion ground boulders together until they turned into the sand on that beach. So when you notice water damage in your Olympia, WA home, even if it’s not that big, you should always take it seriously. Here’s what you should do:
Stop The Leak
The first thing you have to do is make sure the damage won’t get worse and won’t come back after you finish fixing and repairing things. That means you need to identify the source of the water that’s causing the damage and plug whatever leak is allowing this to happen. There are a few different possibilities:
1-A leaky pipe caused by rust or a loose connection.
2-Badly finished or weakened waterproofing along the edge of the building’s basement or crawlspace.
3-A leaky roof.
4-A clogged drain.
5-Flooding caused by groundwater pushing upward into the basement.
Each problem demands its own solution, like replacing old pipes and installing a sump pump to keep the groundwater from flooding your foundation.
Shut Down The Electricity
Electricity and water are not a safe combination, especially if you plan on making major repairs to the damaged area. As such, you should start by going to your home’s breaker box and shutting down the power to the affected area. You can then safely remove any electrical appliances and lamps without worrying about shocking yourself by accident.
Remove Your Belongings
Water can damage wood, drywall, bricks, furniture, clothing, and even steel shelves. If there’s anything you want to keep near the water leak or any pooling water, you should get it away immediately. Also keep in mind that you or the Olympia, WA contractor you hire might cause damage to the area in the process of fixing the water damage.
Contact Your Homeowner’s Insurance Carrier
No matter where in Olympia, WA you live, your homeowner’s insurance should cover minor flooding and water damage. A major flood might be a different story, so take some time to review your policy and find out whether you need a second policy to cover a flood disaster. However, even with minor water damage your insurer might be reluctant to pay your claim, so make sure you take plenty of photographs, have a professional inspector take a look at the damage, and know your rights about what you can demand from your insurer.
Water damage can lead to serious issues like structural weakness, mold growth, and buckling basement walls. Be sure to read up on what water damage looks and smells like, and have a look around your basement or crawlspace every now and then to make sure everything is in good shape. And if it’s not, be prepared to act immediately to fix the problem and repair the damage.