Top Causes of Property Water Damage and How to Prevent Them

Water damage can happen to your property at any time and for many reasons. From plumbing leaks to malfunctioning appliances or sewer backups, water overflow has the potential to cause significant and long-term damage to your home, especially if it’s not taken care of right away. ServiceMaster Restore has been in the business of water damage restoration for over 70 years. We have the experience and expertise to respond to all types of water damage, regardless of the source.


To reduce the risk of long-term damage issues such as mould growth or structural and foundational damage caused by water leakage or flooding, follow some or our tips below.


Broken or Leaking Pipes

Broken or leaking plumbing pipes are among the most common sources of water damage to a home. Sometimes, all it takes is a change in water pressure or freezing temperatures to cause pipes to burst. Even a minor dripping leak can lead to substantial damage over time. Keep in mind that not all water damage is visible. Plumbing or drain issues can often be invisible and can go unnoticed within the walls of your home or in areas that are not often used.


If you can see water where it shouldn’t be, there is also very likely water damage that you can't see. Inspect your home regularly for signs of leaking pipes. Early moisture detection can prevent more extensive damage over time. Be aware of sounds of dripping water or signs of water rings or stains that appear on walls, ceilings or floors.


Water Overflow

Water damage caused by overflowing sinks, bathtubs or toilets can destroy flooring, carpeting and walls, and even break through a downstairs ceiling if not detected early enough. If water damage is not cleaned up and restored right away, permanent structural damage and mould growth can also occur. Always keep an eye on running faucets, and to ensure your toilets don’t overflow, know how to turn off the water supply at the valve.


In the event you're unable to turn off faucets or taps, learn how to turn off the main water supply lines to your home. If water damage is extensive, contact a water damage restoration company immediately. Acting quickly is the key to avoiding costly long-term damage to your home and belongings.

Faulty Household Appliances

Mechanical malfunctioning or clogging can cause appliances to leak. A dishwasher leak, for instance, can cause water damage to adjacent walls, floors and cabinetry, and lead to mould growth. Refrigerators can have a clogged pipe or leaking defrost pan, and washing machines and HVAC units can become worn over time and begin to leak unless they're regularly maintained. Regular appliance maintenance is the first step to prevent water damage to your home.


Clogged Gutters

A clogged roof gutter can cause water to overflow and slowly seep into your home through roof leaks, damaged siding or a damaged foundation. Seasonal cleaning is necessary to ensure your gutters are free of debris. At least twice a year, remove leaves, twigs, seed pods, and other blockage from your gutters.


Sewage Backups

Most sewer backups are caused by excess water from severe storms or by tree roots blocking your home's pipes. Both scenarios can lead to catastrophic water overflow, especially if you are unable to act fast.


While you can't prevent storms, we recommend contacting your insurance agent to discuss which homeowner policy can protect you against water damage caused by sewer backups. To guard against the risk of tree roots blocking your pipes, have a sewer expert clean out your sewer line every other year.


Prevent Long-term Water Damage to Your Home

Even with the best precautions, it is difficult to guard against all the causes of water damage in your home. The key to water damage repair is to act fast to prevent or minimize the onset of mould and structural destruction.


If water damage does occur in your home, call on ServiceMaster Restore to act fast and restore your home back to normal. Our experts will analyze your damage and create a personalized, comprehensive restoration plan to get your home up and running as soon as possible.