Useful Tips To Protect Your Home From Water Damage

Make sure to add these areas to a regular maintenance schedule to identify problems before they become serious.


Pipes, plumbing and appliances

  • Listen for unusual sounds, which may indicate leaks in water lines or pipes.
  • Repair leaky faucets and dripping toilets.
  • Inspect your hot water tank, under sinks and behind washing machines.
  • Check washing machine hoses for damage.  Replace cracked or worn hoses.
  • Replace wax toilet ring if there is evidence of leaking.
  • Install a water level monitoring device.

Sump pump and sewers

  • To prevent sewer water backup, install a sewer backflow valve that closes automatically if the main sewer water gets backed up.
  • Check the sump pump and the backflow valves and have a plumber inspect them at least once a year.
  • Listen for strange noises coming from the sump pump motor.
  • If you notice oil on the surface of the water in your sump pit, verify the oil seal.  Leaking oil can cause the motor to burn out.
  • Replace the battery on your sump pump regularly.


  • Look for bubbling paint or stains on ceilings, which can indicate a leaking pipe or water dripping from the roof.


  • Look for water stains, which can indicate a leaking pipe.
  • Feel your basement walls for evidence of flaking, dampness, stains or mould.


  • Check your floors for water stains, particularly near dishwashers and sinks.
  • To maintain easy access, do not cover floor drains.

Moisture Problems

  • Use a dehumidifier, if necessary, in damp areas such as basements
  • Be sure the air in your bathroom and kitchen is well vented to avoid condensation.
  • Check that your dryer is properly vented-clear out lint build up in the exhaust hose and external vent to prevent obstructions that can lead to moisture build up.



  • Have your roof inspected for cracks, breaks, and loose or missing shingles.
  • Look for leaks and holes in rain gutters, downspouts and extensions.
  • Clear gutters and downspouts of debris such as leaves and dirt.
  • Make sure your downspouts are directed away from your home.
  • Make sure screw heads and fasteners are properly sealed.
  • Inspect and seal around chimneys, roof stacks and vents.

Outside walls, doors and windows

  • Assess glazing, weather-stripping, door and window seals, and other exterior elements for damage.
  • Look for cracks on outside walls and foundations and repair them, if any are found.
  • Repair or replace, caulking around windows and doors to make watertight.
  • Check that exterior siding is securely fastened, as missing screws can create openings for water.
  • Keep any source of water, such as snow away from your home's exterior walls.
  • Shut off water supply to exterior water faucets during the winter to prevent pipes from freezing.
John Siarkas

John Siarkas

CENTURY 21 Heritage Group Ltd., Brokerage*
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