Identifying Appliances That Could Cause a Water Intrusion and Water Damage
Blog Summary: SERVPRO of Ennis/Red Oak highlights appliances that have vulnerable connections that could cause water damage.
When an appliance supply line connection leaks or ruptures, causing a small flood, the technicians at SERVPRO of Ennis/Red Oak are the water damage repair professionals who can provide the rapid response and quick cleanup needed to avoid advanced secondary damage and return life to normal.
Water is essential for life. Seventy percent of the earth is covered with water, and the human body is 60 percent water. Humans can go for weeks without food but only a few days without adequate water. The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine recommends that males consume about 125 ounces of water per day and females around 91 ounces of water per day. Survival, bathing, cooking, and cleaning require the use of water. Water is everywhere in the home. For this reason, the potential for water damage is great should there be an unintentional or accidental water release that gets out of control or goes unnoticed.
By monitoring the following list of home appliance connections that are susceptible to causing water leaks, the homeowner can avoid a water damage disaster or at least detect a water leak before it becomes catastrophic.
Home appliance connections that are susceptible to causing water leaks
1. The Water Heater
Water on demand is most appreciated when the water heater malfunctions. A hot bath or steamy shower is soothing after a long, hard day. A typical water heater contains forty to sixty gallons of water, which are always under pressure. If the tank springs a leak, large portions of the home could be flooded. If external pipes feeding water to the unit begin to show signs of corrosion, an internal problem could be the cause. White, blue, or green crystal-like deposits on the pipe are a telltale sign that the appliance needs attention. Since the water heater is often concealed in a closet behind a panel, maintenance is difficult and may go neglected. While today’s water heaters are better designed than older models, they still require regular maintenance to prolong their lives.
A gas water heater may last about 8-12 years with proper maintenance, including draining and flushing the unit. An electric water heater may function well for 10-15 years before needing to be replaced. Regular inspections may detect slight leaks before extensive and costly water damage in a home or business.
2. Washing Machine Supply Lines
The introduction of the first electric washing machine in 1908 transformed an arduous and time-consuming household chore, lightening the burdensome load of washing clothes by hand. The amazing technological advance in domestic engineering included water supply lines comprised of rubber or braided stainless steel. Over time, about five to seven years, these supply lines are susceptible to bursting. If a line ruptures, as many as seven or more gallons of water can flood into a home, causing severe flooding. Flooring, baseboards, and sheetrock can be damaged. If the water leaks into the HVAC duct system, mold becomes an issue if the moisture and water are not removed and dried within 24-48 hours. As a rule of thumb, never leave the washing machine running when no one is home. Before going on an extended vacation or trip, shut off the water, both hot and cold, to the appliance.
3. The Dishwasher
Dishwashers are another extraordinary invention that makes cooking and entertaining more manageable. When a supply line ruptures, the results can be devastating. Avoid using the dishwasher while no one is at home. Periodically check under and around the appliance for signs of a leak. Have a professional clean and inspect the unit to keep it up to par.
4. The HVAC Drain Pan
Summer temperatures in Ennis, TX, are hot and muggy, and temperatures consistently rise to the mid to high nineties. This extreme heat can degrade plastic HVAC drain pans, leading to cracks and leaks. Since the water leaks out of the pan, the overflow sensor never shuts off the HVAC system. A typical HVAC system running almost continuously on a hot summer day can produce as many as twenty gallons of water.
When the HVAC technician conducts the annual inspection of the system, verify that the drain pan is not leaking, the lines out of the drain pan are freely flowing, and the water level sensor is functioning properly.
5. Refrigerator Water Supply Line
A ruptured supply line to a refrigerator ice maker can release several gallons of water per minute onto the floor, causing extensive flooding and water damage. Signs of a pending disaster include kinks, crimps, cracks, and leaks around connections. Be very careful when moving the refrigerator for inspections and cleaning.
6. The Sump Pump
Most people do not consider the sump pump an “appliance,” but the device and its backup system are pivotal in preventing basement and crawl space flooding. Inspect and test the system at least twice a year. Clean out any trash or debris that may have collected in the sump area.
Entrust water damage restoration to the property damage experts at SERVPRO of Ennis/Red Oak. Available 24/7, 365 days a year, including holidays, a crew can be on the scene in about an hour to begin the process. Experienced, well-equipped, highly trained, and certified technicians provide a rapid response and a quick cleanup and restoration that cuts costs and returns life to normal as soon as possible. Customer satisfaction is a core value in the SERVPRO franchise culture.