Leaking plumbing fixtures and appliances not only waste water and increase your water bill, but they can also cause significant water damage to your property. What may seem like a small puddle of harmless water could lead to major water damage issues down the line.
The problem with water damage is that the longer it sits (or goes unnoticed), the more damage it causes. Water damage can peel paint, warp wood, and lift floorboards, all while it slowly seeps into spaces it shouldn’t. Fortunately, if you regularly check your plumbing fixtures and appliances for signs of faults or leaks, you can help prevent water damage from occurring in the first place.
In this post, we’ll take a closer look at the top fixtures and appliances that are prone to cause water damage, how you can check each fixture and appliance, and steps you can take to prevent leaks from occurring in the first place.
As you know, a lot of water passes through your tubs, showers, sinks, and toilets every day—especially if you have a big family! If any of these fixtures are faulty, leaking, or damaged, you could be facing dreaded water damage. Play it safe, and be sure to inspect the plumbing fixtures in your home regularly so you can discover any tell-tale signs of leaks before you have water damage on your hands. It’s a good idea to set a reminder on your phone to check once a month so that you don’t forget.
3 Plumbing Fixtures Likely to Cause Water Damage
Most people think that the pipes are the main culprits for leaks, but the drains are often just as suspect. While it may start off as water-tight, a drain can start to leak over time. As these leaks get worse, they can cause significant water damage later on.
Signs to look for? Fortunately, these are easy to spot: Examine the flooring around your shower or underneath your tub for any signs of tiles or flooring that’s lifting. Sometimes there may even be discoloration or water damage on the ceiling of the room below the bath or shower.
- Water Heater
If you have a water heater that uses a tank, this is another leak-prone fixture. Because these water tank systems contain large amounts of water 24/7 and experience regular temperature shifts (which can often lead to a decaying seal), regular checks are required.
Signs to look for? The most likely weak spot is the tank’s pressure relief valve. You can listen for hissing or place some paper towels beneath an area to see if water shows up.
- The Toilet
While a running toilet is unlikely to cause water damage, it will still equate to water wastage and an increase in your water bill. However, if the actual toilet leaks, it can quickly damage the flooring or ceiling of the room below. That’s why it’s crucial to respond promptly to any toilet issue that comes up—including clogging.
Signs to look for? If your toilet runs, it could be the fill tube, the float, or the flapper valve. If you’re handy, you can fix these parts quite easily or call in a professional to help. If you see puddles spreading from the toilet itself (even a tiny amount), call a plumber ASAP.
Just like with your home’s plumbing fixtures, you should also be checking your appliances regularly for any leaks. Sadly, your trusty refrigerators, dishwashers, and washing machines are vulnerable to major leaks that can cause water damage to the surrounding areas.
You also need to take note of how old these appliances are and if they are nearing the end of their life span and should be replaced.
3 Appliances Most Likely to Cause Water Damage
- Washing Machine
If you see leaks around the washing machine’s clamps on the water hose, it’s likely a warning sign for future mishaps. It is recommended to inspect your water hoses on a monthly basis and to replace them every five years—no matter how good they look on the outside.
Signs to look for? Search for any leaking and rusting anywhere on the washing machine. Examine your pipes thoroughly and check for any pools of water near your washing machine or outlet pipe.
Full of ice and condensation, our beloved fridges are another prime suspect for those pesky leaks. Noticed a pool of water suddenly appearing underneath your fridge? It might mean that irregular sealing or a defrosted drain clog has caused this to happen.
Signs to look for? To check your sealing, examine the rubber that seals the refrigerator door. It is also advised to check the hose and water line to ensure they are correctly connected.
As much as they make our lives so much easier, dishwashers are another appliance that often leaks. If your dishwasher has faulty hoses and valves, there’s a good chance it will start to leak. Plus, if not fixed quickly, loose essential plumbing connections are likely to cause a puddle of water in your kitchen.
Signs to look for? To make sure the water inlet valve is not leaking, you can remove the dishwasher’s bottom plate. A leak will usually be a slow drip coming from the top of the valve. Also, look for a hard water material or corrosion on the valve itself.
Five Steps to Prevent Serious Appliance and Fixture Leaks
- Step 1: Make a habit of inspecting your appliances and fixtures every month to check for leaks and damage.
- Step 2: Schedule regular maintenance services for both appliances and fixtures.
- Step 3: Take note of the average lifespan of every appliance as well as the pipes being used.
- Step 4: If you notice any leaks or damage to your fixtures, call a plumber to help fix or replace them ASAP.
- Step 5: Call a water damage restoration company as soon as possible if you already have water damage.
An Important Note About Water Shut Off Valves
All homeowners should know where their home’s emergency water shut-off valve is and how to use it to shut off your home’s main supply of water. If something suddenly causes a spouting leak, shutting off the water at the main source is the best way to prevent major damage. It’s also a good idea to shut off the water in your home if you are away for a week or more.
How R1 Can Help with Water Damage
If you face water damage caused by an appliance or plumbing fixture, Restoration 1 specializes in professionally treating and repairing water damage. Our team at Restoration 1 has all the proper training, tools, and equipment to properly dry and restore any affected areas. Restoration 1 is available 24/7 to help, which means we can come and assist with a burst pipe or leaking faucet at any time of the day or night. As soon as a call is logged, our team will mobilize within the hour. To learn more about our water damage restoration process, click here.
To schedule an appointment or contact us, click here.