Four Ways to Check for Hidden Water Leaks
Hidden water damage found when wood flooring was removed.
Think you may have a water leak somewhere in your home? Here are some good ways to tell when the leak is not obvious.
- Pay Attention to Increased Water Bills
Monitor your water bill for sudden unexplained increases.
- Check Your Water Meter
Pick a few hours when you can go without using the water In your home. Record your water meter before and after. Was there an increase?
- Toilet Leaks
Put a drop of food coloring in your toilet’s tank. If within 15 minutes or less, the toilet bowl reveals that color, you may have a leak. Make sure to flush the toilet multiple times after performing this test so your bowl does not get stained.
- Look for Mold
Where there is mold, there is moisture. Something is feeding that moisture. It’s possible there is a leak somewhere.
Restoring a Lewisville home from a water line failure.
Restoring a Lewisville home from a water line failure.
Unfortunately we must remind those in our community that water damages don't wait until after the holidays. They always seem to happen at the most inconvenient time, right?
The water supply line to the toilet in this Lewisville home failed while the owners were away at work causing multiple rooms to be affected. Our emergency response team received the call and was onsite within 30 minutes to begin restoration services. Our team understands it's imperative to begin restoring the structure as soon as possible to reduce secondary damage as well as down time for residents and business owners.
If your home or business experiences a water damage or any other loss this holiday season, give our team at SERVPRO of Flower Mound/Lewisville a call! 972-420-4771
Why is My Refrigerator Leaking Water?
Reasons for a Leaky Refrigerator
If your refrigerator is leaking water and causing water damage to your flooring it’s usually because if one of two reasons.
Reason #1 your fridge is leaking
A blocked defrost drain is one of the most common causes of water leakage. This happens when food particles or other debris clogs up the drain hose, which can lead to ice buildup and, eventually, water leaking out of the freezer and refrigerator.
Fix: First, try flushing the drain from inside the freezer with warm water, using a turkey baster or a small funnel. You can also try using a pipe cleaner or a straightened coat hanger to forcibly remove the clog. If this doesn't fix the problem you may need to manually remove the debris that is clogging the check valve at the end of the drain hose.
Reason #2 your fridge is leaking
From time to time, a clogged or frozen water supply line will cause water to puddle beneath the refrigerator. It will also affect ice production from the ice maker and slow or stop water flow from the dispenser.
Fix: First, unplug the refrigerator and locate the shut-off valve, typically underneath the sink, behind the refrigerator, or below the refrigerator in the basement. Make sure this valve is closed, and look for any leaks, kinks, or clogs in the plastic supply line.
Source: CNET online
How Quickly Does Mold Grow After Water Damage
Should I repair water damage myself?
Maybe you had a water leak from a plumbing problem or from a leaky refrigerator. Maybe we had a major storm, hurricane, or tornado sweep through the Dallas area. Either way, now your home has water damage. Depending on how severe the water damage, you are probably asking yourself, “Should I clean up the water damage myself or hire a professional?”. The following are a couple things to consider. First, hopefully, the water damage will be covered by your insurance company. SERVPRO of Flower Mound / Lewisville works with all insurance companies in the area and knows what each company is looking for (this will make things easier on you). Second, if the area is not properly and completely dried out, even in the areas you cannot see, the structure will more than likely suffer secondary damage. What is secondary damage? Mold growing in your home is known as secondary damage after a water damage event. Mold needs moister to grown and it can grow within 24-48 hours. Time is a factor after a water damage. If mold is already growing in your home after a water damage, SERVPRO of Flower Mound / Lewisville can remediate that as well. We are here to help. Give us a call today!
What to Do When the Toilet is Overflowing
Help! My toilet is overflowing!
An overflowing toilet is a problem everyone will likely deal with at some point. When water overflows from the bowl, chances are the culprit is a clogged toilet drain—usually an easy fix with some basic tools.
First, turn off the toilet’s water supply, on the wall behind the toilet. If you can’t find the water supply to stop the toilet overflowing, take the top off the tank and lift the float ball or cup high enough to stop the water from running. If that does not work, the shut off valve for the water supply to the house is generally located near the water heater.
Should overflow continue once the main water supply is off, you’re dealing with sewage backup, a serious situation due to the hazardous nature of the sewage water. If you are on a municipal septic system, you may need to call the city. If you have a septic tank, you’ll need a plumbing company that can flush out your system.
Water damage gets worse the more time that goes by. Call SERVPRO of Flower Mound / Lewisville right away to minimize the damage. We will work with your insurance every step of the way. Here to Help
How to Flush a Hot Water Heater
Ready to get started? You won’t need much. Really, the key essentials are:
This list assumes that you can run the hose somewhere to allow the water from your hot water heater can drain safely. If not, get a couple of five-gallon buckets ready to capture what you drain.
In addition to gathering your materials, there’s another key step you really can’t skip. Check the warranty for your hot water heater. Performing maintenance yourself, even simple maintenance like this, could void your warranty.
Step one: Cut off power and water
Make sure your water heater is disconnected from its power source before you get started. If it’s electric, that means turning off the circuit breaker at your main breaker panel, then unplugging it. If it’s gas, note the temp it’s at for later, then turn the gas control knob to “Pilot.” Make sure your water heater is completely turned off before you move forward because draining water away from the heating element when it’s working can damage it.
Then, turn off your water heater’s water supply by shutting off the cold water valve. It will be located at the top of or above your water heater along a pipe that supplies it with cold water. A 90-degree turn will usually shut off the water.
If you can, wait overnight before you proceed to step two. This will allow your hot water heater to cool off so you’re not dealing with scalding water in next steps. If you can’t, use extra care.
Step two: Prevent a vacuum
You don’t want anything bad happening with your water lines while you flush your hot water heater, so go turn on the hot water somewhere in your house. Having this water source open will prevent a vacuum from forming as the tank drains.
Step three: Get ready to drain
You’re about to empty out your hot water heater and all that water needs to go somewhere. Control it by connecting a hose to the drain valve. It will be located at the bottom of your water heater and will probably look a lot like a standard garden faucet. Tighten the hose with a wrench and drape a towel over the connection so you don’t have to deal with any spray issues.
Feed the hose somewhere the water can safely drain or put it in a bucket. Next, open the pressure relief valve towards the top of your water heater. It’s usually a lever you simply flip.
Step four: Drain it
If you didn’t let your water cool, be ready for hot water to flow quickly out of your tank. Consider gloves or towels to protect your skin. If you’re using the bucket method, have a second bucket ready to take its place when it gets full. Alternately, you can turn off the drain valve when the water nears the top of your bucket, drain it, then reopen the valve and refill your bucket, emptying as needed until your water heater is empty.
Open the drain valve and watch all that water and sediment pour out. Keep going until the tank is empty.
Step five: Flush it
Reopen the cold water valve at the top of your tank for a few seconds, then shut it off again and let the water drain. This will stir up any leftover sediment so you can fully flush your hot water heater. Repeat this process until you don’t see any more sediment coming out of your tank.
Step six: Refill it
Close the drain valve and close the pressure relief valve. Disconnect your hose. Next comes a sort of annoying step. Turn on all the hot water faucets in your house (sinks, bathtubs, showers, etc.). Having these freely flowing as you refill your tank prevents any pressure issues from arising within your water lines.
Then, turn the cold water supply back on and let your tank fill. Once it’s full, slowly reopen the pressure relief valve again to let any excess air get released. Then, close it again.
Now, head back to your faucets. Once water flow returns to steady (keep an eye out for hiccups and spurts that are indicative of air bubbles), turn them all off.
Step seven: Restore power
If your water heater is electric, plug it back into the wall before you restore power to it at your main circuit breaker. Then, turn it back on at the breaker box.
If it’s gas, relight the pilot and turn the knob back to the temperature at which it was previously set.
Listen to your water heater. You’ll be able to hear it start working again. In about 30 minutes, test that you have hot water again.
Source: Freshome November 2019