3 Ways to Prevent Water Damage in the Laundry Room
Laundry rooms are one of the most common places for flooding and water damage. Fortunately, this type of water damage can often be prevented with habits of careful observation and maintenance. Check out 3 best practices that will help in preventing water damage in your laundry room.
Machine & Hose Check
Washing machines are one of the biggest culprits for water damage because hoses are always running. Hoses should be checked regularly for any signs of damage or strain including cracks, bulges, or leaks. They should be replaced every 3 to 5 years. Replace rubber hoses with steel braided ones. They are much sturdier, last longer, and have less risk of breakage.
Keep at least 4-6 inches between the washer and the walls. This will prevent hoses from kinking. Check connections for any signs of rust, moisture, or dripping near connection hoses. Make sure that all connections are secured tightly.
Keeping your washer running efficiently means making sure there is nothing blocking draining water. Check your pump valve and filter for any signs of debris or damage.
If you notice your machine moving from its original spot, rocking, or drifting forward then that may mean extra stress on connections and hoses. Check the balance of your washer and make adjustments where needed.
If you have a sink in your laundry room, be sure to look for signs of leaks including cracked or warped flooring. Check for condensation or corrosion up around pipes. Replace rubber pipes with steel-braided lines for added security.
It may be tempting to load up your washer to full capacity, but it may not be equipped to handle that kind of strain. Know the load limits for your machine and be sure to use only appropriate amounts of water for the size of your load. If you are washing heavy, bulky items, wash separately in smaller loads.
If you are leaving for an extended time, turn off the water supply valve to your machine. It is also recommended that the main water supply for your home be turned off if you are leaving for a longer time, like on a trip.
Having a laundry room upstairs is convenient, but it brings with it more risk. Consider installing a flood stopper. This is a device with a sensor that detects moisture and automatically shuts off your water supply if triggered. They cost around $150 but give you added protection against flooding and water damage. At the very least with an upstairs washer, place a drip pan underneath your machine. This little addition may help if you get to flooding quick enough.
Know What to Do if There’s a Leak
Just like any emergency, it is always important to be safe. If the source of your water leak is evident and safely accessible, shut off the main valve or close the window or door from which water is getting into the property. If you are unable to stop the water, call a professional plumber immediately.
Once the water is off, assess the situation. If the water is cleaned up easily with no other apparent damage, then you can clean up, wait for drying, and call the necessary professionals for any needed repairs to broken materials.
While prevention is always the goal, it’s also important to know when to call in the professionals for help. Anytime there is standing water, dampness, or other water damage, you will need to make a call. Acting promptly in these situations is vital to avoid further damage.
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