As a homeowner, protecting your investment from water and flood damage is of the utmost importance, especially here in southwest Florida. Our summers are notorious for torrential downpours on an almost daily basis. It’s a small price to pay for enjoying the area’s unparalleled beauty and beaches, and it’s as easy as keeping your home maintenance up to date. Granted, when a major hurricane is headed our way there’s only so much you can do, but otherwise ongoing maintenance will keep your home protected from unnecessary water leaks and damage for years.

Florida-based Emergency Restoration Services concurs, offering some common sense suggestions for maintaining your home to provide optimal protection.

PROPER DRAINAGE

Preventing water damage outside of your home is as easy as ensuring proper drainage is in place. Heavy downpours and rainwater can eventually cause cracks in the concrete, pooling of water and create pathways for water to get in your home. Clean your gutters regularly to make sure they aren’t clogged with leaves, twigs and other debris. These clogged pathways can cause the water to run down the side of your house and eventually damage the paint, siding or even foundation. Consider installing gutter guards to help prevent this clogging, and guide the flow of the water safely away from your home.

ROOF INSPECTION AND CLEANING

After a hurricane and especially at the end of rainy season, having your roof inspected will provide peace of mind and the assurance that all is well up there. Might as well clean it while you’re at it, right? J. Sweet Construction can recommend the right roof inspection/cleaning company for your needs and roofing style.

MAINTAIN LANDSCAPING

Keeping your vegetation in check will not only increase your home’s curb appeal, but will also keep you abreast of any invasive root systems from winding their way into your home plumbing system. (This is Florida, it happens!) ERS advises to plan before you plant in order to keep roots away from any water lines, and trim shrubbery that’s grown out around utility lines and access spots. While you’re checking out the ground…

INSPECT SPRINKLER SYSTEM

Make sure your sprinklers are all functioning properly and not pooling water near your home, says Budget Dumpster. The incessant buildup of water spots near the house could eventually cause significant damage to your foundation.

LOCATE YOUR WATER MAIN

You’d be surprised at how many people don’t actually know where their water main is located. In the event of a burst pipe or leak inside your home, you’ll need to know real quick, so take a moment to locate it before something possibly happens to prevent further damage and loss.

CHECK APPLIANCES REGULARLY

Inspect the water hoses on your washer, dishwasher, refrigerator and around sinks to ensure that all is attached properly. A hidden water leak can cause mildew and the dreaded black mold. Consider switching to a flood-safe hose to further prevent possible leaking. Check your water heater and air conditioning unit as well. The AC unit especially is running overtime during the summer, and regular checks for any signs of leaks or water damage are vital.

THE ATTIC

If you’re like most, you haven’t been up in your attic in a long time. It’s a good idea to take a peek up there once in awhile to make sure there are no leaks or mold, or the worst-case scenario: A leaky pipe has led to damage all the way through to the ceiling tiles. Avoid those issues and check out your attic every now and then.

WATER LEAK DETECTION AND MONITORING SYSTEMS

Go the extra mile and let technology do the detecting for you, says ERS. Water flow monitoring systems protect your entire house by measuring the flow of water into you home. By attaching directly to your water main, it is able to detect continuous water flow that isn’t consistent with your everyday use and will stop the water flow into your house automatically. That’s real peace of mind when you’re away on vacation!  Water leak alarms work like smoke alarms. Put it on the floor and when it detects water in a specific area, an alarm is triggered. You can place them virtually anywhere that might encounter water damage.

Keep these preventative measures top of mind, and you’ll have a better chance at stopping water leaks before they start in your Florida house. For more ideas on new build and remodeling projects that feature up to date water safety standards, talk to J. Sweet Construction.