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How a Small Leak Turns into a Flooded Home

Some floods are national disasters. When a year’s worth of rain pours down in just a few days, the flood can sweep cars away and devastate homes. These are the types of floors you’re probably most wary of, but even small leaks from your plumbing system could turn into a flooded home.

While a burst pipe, overflowing toilet, or split washing machine hose doesn’t warrant calling in the National Guard, a water leak can still be extremely inconvenient and costly to repair. Learn more about how to find a water leak in your home so you can prevent a flood.

Which Small Leaks are Most Likely to Turn into Big Leaks?

Your home contains pipes and plumbing fixtures that act like ticking time bombs just waiting to develop a problem. The amount of time it takes for a small leak to turn into a flooded home varies widely, but as soon as you notice a small leak, you should repair it immediately!

Here are some small leaks that have the potential to flood your home:

  • Corroded water heater: It’s unlikely for your water heater tank to fail all at once. What’s more common is for a small leak to develop where the tank weakens the most. If this goes unnoticed, a corroded water heater could easily flood your basement.
  • Loose icemaker hose: The icemaker in your fridge is convenient, but the hose that supplies the water could fail or come loose, slowly dripping water onto the floor below. After weeks or months of this slow, steady dripping, the floor cavity could fill with water until the drywall finally gives way and dumps a flood of water into the basement.
  • Split washing machine or dishwasher hose: The water supply hoses for these appliances tend to fail after a decade or so. The failure is usually gradual, starting with a small leak on the kitchen or laundry room floor until it completely splits and creates a flood.
  • Pipe ruptures: Your home’s main water supply line can rust and corrode over time, creating tiny pinhole leaks. Then, a rupture occurs without warning, causing a flooded home.

How to Prevent a Small Leak from Flooding Your Home

Small leaks are no big deal, as long as you find and correct them quickly. Follow these tips to prevent a small leak from turning into a flooded home:

  • Have your pipes and plumbing fixtures maintained annually: An inexpensive visit from a plumber gives you peace of mind, knowing that your plumbing, water heater, appliances, and fixtures are all working as they should.
  • Detect leaks with a water meter reading: Here’s an easy way to check for hidden leaks. Go outside and read your water meter, refrain from using any water for two hours, and then read your water meter again. If the number has changed, you know you have a leak and can start searching for it.
  • Know how to turn off your home’s main water supply: This way, if a small leak grows into a big leak, you can shut off the water and minimize damage.
  • Install a flood sensor: This simple addition to your home sends an alert to your Smartphone if a leak is detected in your plumbing system, giving you ample time to shut off the water, find the leak, and fix it before the problem becomes serious.

Request Water Damage Restoration from Rainbow International®

Despite your best efforts, a small leak may still end up flooding your home. If this happens to you, contact Rainbow International for fast, professional help cleaning up the mess and getting your life back in order.

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