The Impact of Climate Change on Flooding Disasters

The Impact of Climate Change on Flooding Disasters

Our weather is no doubt becoming more extreme. Climate change and rising global temperatures are largely to blame for this pattern. Rainfall is more intense, sea levels are climbing, and hurricanes are becoming more frequent. Here’s what you need to know to protect yourself and your property.  

Types of Flooding

There are four main types of flooding: river and stream flooding, coastal flooding, flash flooding, and urban flooding.

One study shows an estimated 41 million U.S. residents are at risk of flooding along rivers and streams. More than 8.6 million Americans live in areas prone to coastal flooding, which can cause widespread devastation. Flash floods are responsible for the greatest number of flood-related fatalities. Urban flooding occurs when rainfall overwhelms the local stormwater drainage capacity of a densely populated area.

Impact of Climate Change on Floods

It is hard to directly link flooding to climate change due to a lack of data on historical events of the past. However, a report by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) found evidence that climate change “has detectably influenced” water-related variables that contribute to flooding, such as rainfall and snowmelt.

How Climate Change Increases Flood Risks

There are several ways climate change can enhance the risk of flooding. 

Heavier precipitation. A warmer atmosphere holds more water which is dumped on our earth. America has heated up about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit since 1901 and has become about 4% wetter. In the Northeast, the most extreme storms generate about 27% more moisture than they did a century ago. Heavy precipitation events are projected to increase, along with temperatures, through the 21st century.  

More hurricanes. The frequency of strong storms is a trend that will likely continue through this century. In the Atlantic basin, an 80% jump in the frequency of category 4 and 5 hurricanes, the most destructive, is expected over the next 80 years.

Increasing global sea levels. As temperatures rise, melting glaciers and ice sheets will dump more water into the seas. Our oceans are seven to eight inches higher than they were in 1900. Three of those inches have been added since 1993. The IPCC predicts world seas will rise anywhere from a foot to more than four feet by this century’s end. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) projects ocean waters along the East Coast could be nearly 10 feet higher by 2100. 

Flash Flooding Trends

The number of flash floods will continue to increase due to more frequent extreme precipitation events. Researchers also expect these floods will become more dangerous, as their timing gets shorter and their magnitude higher. 

It may also become more common for flash floods to follow catastrophic wildfires that destroy forests and other vegetation. Wildfires weaken the soil and make it less permeable. If heavy rain falls in the area, the land won’t absorb it like it once did. 

How to Prepare for Flooding 

There are a few things you can do to prepare for high water. If you live in a flood-prone area, invest in flood insurance. Plan and practice an evacuation route and routine with your family. Assemble an emergency supply kit. Visit for help. Stay on top of changing weather conditions.  

Let Us Clean Up the Mess

When it comes to home disasters, Flood Department is here to help. We provide repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We are dedicated to helping reverse the damage done by water, mold, sewage, smoke, and more. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Contact us today at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.  

How to Dry Out Home Water Damage

How to Dry Out Home Water Damage

Excess water can quickly wreak havoc in a home. When a pipe bursts, or flood waters invade, it can be a nightmare. Here are ways to quickly dry out the premises and clean up the mess.

Drying Out Time

The first question many people ask is how long it will take to dry out their home. The drying process typically takes about five days. However, the time can vary depending on the amount of damage and how long the area has been wet. If the drying process isn’t taken care of quickly, more damage may occur.

How to Prepare for Clean Up

You and your family will likely have to leave the house for a time while the mess is being cleaned up. This will allow certified experts to survey the damage, set up drying equipment, and make repairs. The process could be further delayed if water has saturated carpeting or flooring. It may have to be pulled up and replaced to keep mold from growing.

How to Dry Your Home

An easy way to treat minor water issues is to let your home air dry. If you open a few windows and let the house air out, the water will dry out faster. Pay attention to the weather forecast. Don’t keep the windows open if it’s raining outside. If you live in a humid climate, this method won’t work.

Home Drying Devices

There are some tools you can use to speed up the drying process.

A high-power fan will efficiently and quickly dry up the general area. It works similar to an automatic hand dryer in a public restroom. The water may even dry in a couple of hours.

Dehumidifiers will help take moisture out of the air. In a drier environment, water is less likely to soak into furniture and the room will dry out faster.

A high-power vacuum will quickly draw water out of carpets, fabrics, or cloth. The device will also reduce the drying time.

A pump is the best way to eliminate large amounts of standing water. Once the water is out, continue drying out the affected area with one of the methods above.

Keep safety in mind before plugging in any device to help dry out your home. Don’t use any equipment near water. Make sure there is no water damage to electrical outlets. If you’re in doubt, call a professional for help.  

Don’t Ignore Water Damage

Water damage that’s left alone can lead to mold growth and mildew, which can cause skin problems and respiratory issues. Untreated water damage can cause structural damage, attract pests, and heighten the risk of electric shock. Untreated water damage can also leave a bad smell in the house and create water stains on walls and ceilings. Electrical damage, high water bills, costly repairs, and lower house values may also result if the damage remains untouched.

Leave the Cleaning to Us

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

How to Prevent Pipes from Freezing

How to Prevent Pipes from Freezing

When it gets really cold outside, the chances of a pipe freezing in your home greatly increases.

Burst pipes are a top cause of property damage during frigid weather. They can easily leave behind  $5,000 or more in water damage. The good news is, there are ways you can prevent a frozen pipe disaster in your home.

Protecting Pipes from Cold

The first step is to insulate your pipes to keep them warm. This is key if pipes are in unheated areas such as basements, attics, and garages. Pipes running through cabinets or exterior walls are also at risk. Pipes commonly freeze at temperatures of 20 degrees and below. Protect vulnerable pipes with a good amount of insulation.

Tips to Stop the Freeze

Homeowners can take some steps to prevent frozen pipes. Leave garage doors closed. Open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to let the heat get to pipes. Let water drip from a faucet to prevent freezing. Keep the heat in your home at a consistent temperature. If you’re going away, set it no lower than 55-degrees. Add insulation to attics, basements, and crawl spaces for extra warmth. Disconnect garden hoses and put them away for winter. Shut off and drain valves that supply outdoor faucets.

Thawing Frozen Pipes

Pipes commonly freeze when temperatures quickly drop, the insulation is poor, and thermostats are set too low. Here’s how to unthaw a frozen pipe.

If no pipes have burst, turn on the faucet. Running water will help melt the ice plug. Heat the frozen pipe with a heating pad, blow dryer, or portable space heater. You can also wrap it in heat tape, heat cables, or towels soaked in hot water. Apply heat until water pressure is back. Make sure any electrical device you use doesn’t touch water.

What to Do if a Pipe Bursts

If you notice a large wet spot on your wall, it’s likely a pipe has burst. Increased water bills, water discoloration, inconsistent water flow, and mold are other tell-tale signs. Here’s how to handle a broken pipe in your home.

Turn off the water supply to prevent further damage. The valve is usually located in the basement, a crawl space, or near your water heater. If the leak is significant, turn off the electricity.

Drain faucets. This will prevent them from refreezing. Flush the toilets to relieve pressure. Turn off the water heater. Leave faucets and taps open so pressure can’t build up.  

Find the leak. Search your house. Look for bulging ceilings and floors, or water stains in your walls. If you find a drip, place a bucket underneath to catch the water.

Call a Pro. Contact a licensed plumber as soon as possible.

How to Clean Up the Mess

Turn off the electricity. Remove carpet, furniture, and anything else you can from the affected area. Soak up the water with old towels, mops, and buckets. If a burst pipe leaves behind a few inches or more of water, use a submersible pump or wet/dry vac. Once it’s removed, open windows, and set up fans and space heaters to help dry the area. If it’s too much to handle, call in a professional service.

Need Help With Clean Up?

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

How to Prevent Holiday Fires

How to Prevent Holiday Fires

As the old, classic song goes, the holidays are “the most wonderful time of the year”. However, that won’t be the case if you have fire hazards lurking in your home. Don’t let flames snuff out your holiday spirit. Here are some key fire prevention tips that can ensure you and your loved ones have a fun and festive holiday season.

House Fire Stats

The statistics are eye-opening. There are an average of 358,000 house fires in America every year. Flames leave behind nearly $12 billion in damage. Cooking is the leading cause of house fires, followed by faulty heating equipment and electrical malfunction. Fire departments respond to a fire in the U.S. every 24 seconds.

Fire Prevention Tips

According to the National Fire Protection Administration, more than one-third of home decoration fires are started by burning candles. Half are ignited by decorations placed too close to a heat source. Almost one-third of home Christmas tree fires are caused by electrical problems. One in every five are sparked by a nearby heat source.

Holiday Decorating Hazards

Many people love to dress up their homes for the holidays. Here are some tips to follow for ultimate safety.

Blow out candles and unplug lights before leaving the home or going to bed. Choose decorations that are flame resistant or flame retardant. Keep lit candles away from anything flammable. Use only indoor string lights inside, and outdoor ones outside. Don’t connect too many light strands together. Read the manufacturer’s instructions. Use clips to hang lights, not nails that can damage cords. Keep decorations away from windows and doors.

Holiday Entertaining Safety

There is nothing worse than having a fire break out in a home full of people. Here’s what you need to know to tame the flames.

Test smoke alarms to make sure they work. Keep matches and lighters up high and out of reach. Stay in the kitchen when cooking on the stovetop. Keep children and pets away from lit candles. Ask smokers to go outside. Provide ashtrays for extinguishing cigarettes.

Live Christmas Trees

If you love to pick a fresh tree, here are some fire safety tips to keep in mind. Choose a tree with fresh, green needles that don’t fall off. Cut 2 inches off the trunk of the tree before putting it in a stand. Keep the tree at least three feet away from any heat source. Add water to the tree stand and keep filling it daily. Get rid of the tree after Christmas. Dried-out trees can quickly go up in flames.

Only use tree lights that are listed by a qualified testing laboratory. Replace any strings with worn or broken cords or loose bulb connections.

Fire Escape Plans

Every household needs to have an escape plan in case of fire. Find two ways to get out of every room in case the main entrance is blocked. Make sure the windows and screens can open. Practice getting low and moving to your exits in case of smoke. Pick a safe meeting place outside. Practice your plan at least twice a year.

Fire Damage Costs

The national average cost of fire damage restoration for a house is $12,900. Water damage alone can cost an average of $1,000 to $4,600 to fix. The price tag goes up when you add in smoke and soot damage, and odor removal.

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage,  Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

How to Cope With a Flooded Basement

How to Cope With a Flooded Basement

There is nothing worse than waking up to find water in your basement. Whether there’s an inch or a foot, it can make a big mess. If your basement takes on water, here are some tips to help you cope with the chaos.

Help for Basement Flooding

A plumber is your best bet if there’s only an inch or two of water in the basement. They can determine the source of the problem. It could be due to a broken pipe or a leaking water heater.

Call a licensed electrician if the water is high enough to reach electrical wiring or outlets. They can assess and repair the damage. Never use an electric tool or turn off the power while standing in water. Let an electrician do it for you.

If there’s significant damage to carpets or walls, contact a professional restoration service. They are experienced in handling water damage and repairs.

Causes of Basement Flooding

There are several ways water can get into a basement. Common causes include heavy rainfall or rapid snowmelt, foundation cracks and broken windows, sump pump problems, and burst or leaking pipes. Poor-draining window wells, an overflowing toilet or bathtub, and a downward property slope can also contribute. Homes with older pipes and those near natural water sources are at higher risk of flooding.

Flooding Clean-Up Tips

If your basement floods, here are some steps to take to help clean it up.

Find the leak location. If it’s due to heavy rain, you’ll need to wait until the storm passes to tackle the mess.

Call a pro. If you’re having trouble finding the leak, call a plumber or disaster restoration company.

Notify the insurance company. They will tell you what your policy covers and your out-of-pocket expenses.

Pump out the water. Do this with a pool pump, a wet vacuum, or a gas-powered water pump. Get rid of the water and dry out the area immediately. Mold can start to grow within 24 to 48 hours.

Take pictures. Photograph everything impacted by the aftermath of the flood. Videos are another useful tool you can use.

Toss items out. Throw out clothing, bedding, pillows, and perishable food that may attract mold.

Scrub the floor. One cup of chlorine bleach mixed with a gallon of water can be used to disinfect the flooring. The solution can be used to clean vinyl tile, linoleum, and other hard surfaces. Wear rubber gloves and protective eyewear while cleaning. Keep the area well ventilated.

Inspect gutters, drains, and downspouts. Get rid of leaves, twigs, and mud. Use a plunger or plumber’s snake to clear drains. Clean out gutters and downspouts on the outside of the house.

Freeze important papers. Put valuable documents and papers that are damp in the freezer. This can temporarily stop mold and mildew until you can attend to them.

Leave the Cleaning to Us

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

What To Do If My Business Floods

What To Do If My Business Floods

Have you ever asked yourself, what should i do if my business floods? Well, we ahve some valuable advice for you that can certainly help.

When we think of flooding, pictures of homes and the people who live in them often come to mind. However, businesses can also be devastated by the impact of high water. Here’s how to cope if your operation is struck by flood waters.

Preparing for a Flood

Flooding can occur anytime and anywhere. The best defense is to be prepared for a flood emergency.

Get flood insurance. You will need it. Keep in mind that it typically takes 30 days for an insurance policy to kick in. Check out the National Flood Insurance Program webpage for more information.

Have a business continuity plan. You must have a plan of action in case of a flood emergency. If you already have one, get together the resources you need to secure business operations. If you don’t, you’ll need to get a business impact analysis (BIA) done. This predicts how a disruption will likely impact the way your business functions and what recovery strategies are needed.

How to Handle a Flood

Here are some necessary steps you need to take if your business is hit with flood waters.

Reach out to employees, customers, and suppliers. Communication with these major players is vital to your business success.

Contact your insurance agent to start your flood insurance claim. Have your policy number and a phone number or email address where you can be reached.

Turn off the utilities. The services at the flood site need to be temporarily shut down. This will save you money as you won’t be using them. Turn the utilities back on when your business is ready to re-open.

Surveying Flood Damage

Always keep safety in mind while inspecting your property following a flood disaster. Never enter a flooded area where standing water may be energized. Use caution when re-entering buildings as there may be structural damage. Have a safety assessment done first. When it’s safe, go back inside and survey the damage. Determine what can be salvaged and how long recovery efforts might take. Begin the recovery process for documents and records. Start cleaning up.

Recovering from a Flood

Now it’s time to record the financial losses your property suffered. Here are a few key steps to follow.

Take inventory. Document all of the items that are missing or damaged. Snap Pictures. Take photos of everything inside and outside your property. Keep receipts. Record any expenses you incurred to temporarily protect your property from further damage. Make a claim. Follow the claims filing procedure in your insurance policy.

How to Flood-Proof Your Property

You can take measures to prevent future flood disasters from striking your property.

First, determine your base flood elevation, or BFE. This is the height that best reduces the chance your property will be damaged by flooding. Buildings should be at least three feet above the BFE.

Landscape with native plants and vegetation. This can help prevent soil erosion and allow flood waters to properly drain.

Raise electric components. Have a licensed electrician install switches, sockets, circuit breakers, and wiring at least 12 inches above your BFE. Move HVAC equipment to an upper floor or build a flood proof wall around it.

Use flood resistant materials. These include floor and wall coverings and insulation. Most of these can handle direct contact with water for at least 72 hours.

Have backup power. Have a system in place to power vital equipment to keep your business running.

Let Us Handle the Mess

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

How to Restore Water Damaged Items

How to Restore Water Damaged Items

When water from a flood, a leaky pipe, or heavy rainfall damages our property, it can be overwhelming. We are often so preoccupied with structural damage, we tend to overlook the small stuff. These are the items in our homes that hold sentimental value. Let’s take a look at how we can salvage our valuable family treasures.

Salvaging Wooden Furniture

Dry out wood furniture pieces that get wet. Place them in a well-ventilated area where the temperature is warm. An operating fan will speed up the drying process. Wet spots can also be fixed. If they are dark, bleach the finish on the wood and repeat. For white spots, gently rub a mixture of baking soda and toothpaste into the spot.

Drying Wet Textiles

Your wardrobe can possibly be salvaged. First, identify what textiles can be saved. Wash them in hot water, detergent, and chlorine bleach. If you have upholstered furniture that got wet, try using a steam cleaner to extract moisture. Clean it with upholstery detergent and rinse with distilled water. Let it dry in areas with running fans and dehumidifiers.

Saving Water Damaged Electronics

If an electronic device gets wet, disconnect it from the power supply and turn it off. Remove the battery and the USB or SD card. Dry the device with a soft cloth. Put the electronic device in rice to help draw out the moisture until a professional can check it.

Restoring Documents and Photos

Don’t throw out important paperwork or photo albums that were damaged by water. There are ways to recover them. Put documents in a dry place. Place each loose sheet on a non-printed paper towel. Carefully remove wet photos from their enclosure and let them air dry. If books are suffering from water damage, lay the book flat and open. Place non-printed paper towels between sections of pages.

Fixing Wet Framed Artwork

If your artwork gets wet, here’s what you can do. Remove the artwork from the frame. If the picture is stable, gently blot away the wetness with a clean towel. Let it dry indoors in a place with good air circulation away from heat and sunlight. If the painting is damaged, consult a professional conservator. If photos, artwork, or documents are stuck to the glass of a frame, leave them alone so they can air dry.

Water Damaged Leather Goods

Use a lukewarm, wet sponge to remove mud and work out water stains. Blot dry with soft cloths or towels. Apply a leather protector. To keep rawhide, semi-tanned leather, and fur supple, gently and frequently manipulate them during drying.

Drying Wet Basketry

If baskets get wet, gently rinse, drain, and blot them to remove excess water. Don’t wring or twist to dry. Stuff the baskets with paper towels or cotton sheets to absorb stains and keep the shape. Let the baskets air dry, regularly changing the blotting material.

Let Us Clean It Up

If your home has suffered water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the damage done by water, mold, sewage, smoke, biohazards, and more. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online for more information.

Flash Floods: How to Survive If One Strikes

Flash Floods: How to Survive If One Strikes

When excessive rainfall strikes, flash flooding often follows suit. Although it can happen anywhere, flash floods are especially common in low lying areas. They can be deadly and costly. Here are some flash flooding facts and tips to survive.

What Causes Flash Floods

Most flash flooding is fueled by slow moving thunderstorms, repeat thunderstorms in the same area, or heavy rains from hurricanes and tropical storms. A dam or levee failure, or a sudden release of water held by an ice jam, can also trigger them.

Cities Are High Risk

Flash floods pose a significant threat to urban areas. City infrastructure such as roads, sidewalks, and parking lots can’t absorb water. The water rapidly accumulates and leads to increased runoff. The infrastructure disrupts the natural flow of water into rivers, streams, and wetlands. Cities can’t handle the excess water.

High Water Volume

Flash floods carry a high amount of water. In extreme cases, water levels can reach up to 30 feet or more. The powerful surge can cause severe damage to anything in its path, including buildings, infrastructure, and natural landscapes.

Floodwaters Are Dangerous

Floodwaters can sweep you away. Vehicles can become difficult to drive in just six inches of water and be swept away in as little as 18 inches. It takes only six inches to sweep a person off their feet. People often underestimate the force and depth of floodwaters. Never risk driving or walking through them. Always turn around, don’t drown.

Flash Flooding Is Deadly

Flash flooding is the number one storm-related killer in the United States. The 30-year average for flood deaths is around 127 people per year. National Weather Service data indicates nearly half of all flash flood deaths are vehicle related.

Hefty Price Tag

Flash floods can cause significant structural damage. Just 12 inches of floodwater on a 2,000-square-foot building can cost $50,000 or more. Flash floods cause billions of dollars in property damage annually across the U.S.

Flash Flood Survival Tips

Here are some basic safety rules to follow in the event of flooding.

Evacuate if you are told to leave. Avoid bridges over fast moving water. Get to higher ground.

If you get trapped on a roof, stay put until help arrives. Get on top of your vehicle if it stalls in water. Never drive through water. Don’t wade in floodwater as there may be hidden debris or downed power lines. Don’t outrun the water. Many people perish when they attempt this instead of moving to higher ground.

Flash Flood Preparations

Here are some tips to follow to make sure you are prepared to handle a flash flood.

Monitor the Weather Forecast. If a flash flood warning is issued for your area, quickly move to higher ground.

Prepare a Disaster Kit. This is especially important if you live in a flood prone area. Include extra water and food, blankets, extra clothes, a first aid kit, prescription medications, a flashlight, a portable radio, and extra batteries.

Know the Hazards in Your Area. Contact your local National Weather Service, emergency management office, or the American Red Cross for information.

Make a Plan. Meet with your family and create a plan in the event of an emergency.

Let Us Handle the Mess

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. We cover Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

Kitchen Flooding: What to Do When it Strikes

Kitchen Flooding: What to Do When it Strikes

Waking up to a kitchen flood is not the ideal way to start the day. Sinks and faucets, refrigerators, garbage disposals, and dishwashers are the most common culprits of unexpected flooding. Broken pipes, clogs, and leaks are usually to blame. Here’s how to keep the water under control.

Causes of Kitchen Flooding

The kitchen faucet. There are several places along the water supply line to your sink that can spring a leak. These include corroded pipes, worn-out gaskets or washers, a cracked or poorly sealed faucet, and a loosely connected P-trap. Kids who enjoy tugging on the sink sprayer can damage it and loosen connections.

The garbage disposal. This useful gadget can leak where it connects to the sink or drain. Leaks can also occur where the dishwasher drain pipe attaches to the garbage disposal.

 A plugged up drain. When water comes up through the kitchen sink drain, there’s most likely a clog. A blockage in the P-trap below your sink can cause wastewater to go in the wrong direction.

The dishwasher. While it’s a beneficial feature, if a dishwasher leaks, water will spill out through the door or from underneath. Leaks can also be subtle and go unnoticed for some time. A warped or soft floor by the appliance and wet spots are signs of a problem.

The refrigerator. Broken water lines can lead to leaks and water damage. Gaskets can also fail. Waterline failures can cause major flooding in short periods of time.

Water pipes. On very cold days, the pipes under the kitchen sink can freeze and burst, causing significant water damage. If the pipes stay intact, the frozen water can compromise connections and cause leaks.

Kitchen Flood Prevention Tips

Here are some action steps you can take to help prevent kitchen flooding.

Keep the kitchen sink flowing. Clogs are commonly caused by food scraps that go down the drain; fat, oil, and grease that solidifies; human hair and fallen objects. Invest in a drain cover to keep unwanted stuff out.

Clean the dishwasher. Remove any loose food particles that can build up over time. Also, check for clogs, a worn door seal, or a broken or loose water hose.

Inspect water dispensers and ice makers. These refrigerator features can cause unexpected kitchen flooding. A loose water line hose and cracks in the plastic pipe are often to blame.

Fancy sink gadgets. These modern conveniences can pose problems. For instance, some items should never be ground up in a garbage disposal. Coffee grounds, eggshells, and potato peels are better left for the compost pile. If you spot water under your sink, check your water filtration system for leaks.

Let Us Repair the Damage

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage,  Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. Our service area covers Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the damage done by water, mold, sewage, smoke, and more. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.

Common Causes of Household Leaks

Common Causes of Household Leaks

Water leaks can pop up in pipes, drain lines, plumbing fixtures, or appliances. They can cause major damage if left alone. Here are some common household leaks and how to prevent them.

Signs of a Leak

Water leaks go unnoticed in nearly 10% of households which wastes about 90 gallons per day. There are certain red flags that indicate your home may be a victim. Check for them.

An inexplicable high water bill is one. Leaks in toilets, faucets, and showerheads are common culprits.

A sudden decrease in water pressure may mean a water supply pipe is leaking or blocked. Sediment build-up in pipes, water leaks, and broken valves are common causes of low water pressure.

The sound of water. If you hear water running, rattling, or hissing when the plumbing fixtures are off, check for a leak.

Other signs of a leak include mold and mildew growth; peeling or blistering paint or wallpaper; and warped, stained, or sagging floors and ceilings.

A slow leak can go undetected for months or years. Homeowners need to inspect their plumbing regularly inside and outside. Look for moisture around the pipes. If leaks are detected and repaired early, it will save you money down the road.

Common Causes of Household Leaks

Faucets and Toilets. A running toilet can be repaired by shortening the flapper chain or replacing the flapper. A leaky faucet can be fixed by replacing the washer. If water keeps dripping into the sink, consider buying a new faucet.

Tub or Sink Cracks. They can cause water to leak out of the basin that’s supposed to be holding it in. Cracks can occur from frequent use, general wear and tear, impact damage, or corrosion. Get them repaired before further use.

Hose Connections. Broken or loose connections can create wet spots in your yard or cause areas to appear to be sunken down. An underground leak is most likely to blame. Find the leak as soon as possible, and tighten the connection or replace it if necessary.

Old Rubber Seals. The seals or washers on appliances that frequently use water can become worn out. As a result, this can cause dishwashers, refrigerators, and washing machines to leak. Get the seals replaced.

Clogged Drain Lines. Water that would usually drain into the sewer or septic system has no place to go. Instead, it backs up in the sink, tub, appliance, or laundry basin. Clear the clogged drain or call a plumber.

Corroded Pipes. For many years, galvanized iron and lead pipes were used in homes. These substances can degrade pipes, causing them to become paper thin. It’s best to replace old pipes and fittings with new copper or plastic ones.

Old Water Heater. Look around the base for signs of leaks. A standard water heater typically lasts 8 to 12 years. Even a small leak can cause big problems. Get the water heater inspected regularly and keep it maintained.

Stopping Leaks

If you find a plumbing leak in your home, here are ways to stop it. Locate your home’s main water valve and shut it off. Install shut-off valves at individual appliances and fixtures. Put in a flow sensor that detects plumbing leaks and automatically shuts off water. Remove hoses from outdoor spigots in the winter. Add insulation to pipes in colder parts of your house.

Most importantly, you must fix problems quickly. Even small leaks can cause significant water damage or mold if left untouched.

Let Us Clean Up

When it comes to water, flood, or fire damage, Flood Department is here to help. We provide water damage repair and clean-up services for homeowners and businesses. Our service area covers Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. We are dedicated to helping reverse the unfortunate results. Contact us at 301-829-2600 or visit us online.