Uncommon Issues That Can Lead to Water Damage to Your Home

**Uncommon Issues That Can Lead to Water Damage to Your Home**

Every homeowner should be aware of many issues other than broken pipes or faulty appliances that could result in water damage. These issues are seldom considered as potential water damage possibilities until it’s too late and the damage has occurred.

Some of these issues are structural, and some are due to landscaping. Other issues may involve ground conditions that your home was built on. Still others can result from architectural design flaws or simply the aging of your home.

Water damage is responsible for 45% of all property damage claims in the United States. As property values continue to increase, so does the cost of homeowner insurance policies. In addition, there have also been steep increases in insurance deductibles, the amount of money each homeowner must pay out before the insurance coverage kicks in.

Here are some less than obvious issues that could result in water damage to your home.

**Structural Issues**
1. **Tree and Shrubbery Roots:**
Tree and shrub roots seeking out water can exert pressure on foundation walls, creating cracks and clogging drainage lines, ultimately causing water to flow back into the home. Preventive measures like root barriers or chemical root killers can mitigate this issue.

2. **Changing Ground Conditions:**
Shifting ground due to soil expansion can stress and crack structural components, leading to cracks in walls or floors, allowing water to enter the home. Settlement of the foundation can also contribute to these issues, especially in homes with crawl spaces or basements.

**Problems with Landscaping**
1. **Poor Grading Around Your Foundation:**
Improper landscape drainage can lead to water pooling alongside your home’s foundation, eventually seeping into your home and causing damage to the foundation, drywall, flooring, and trim. Proper grading is crucial to avoid this.

2. **Sidewalks and Driveways:**
Improperly constructed sidewalks and driveways without adequate drainage mechanisms can act as a dam, trapping water against your foundation. Designing them to slope away from the home and installing expansion joints can mitigate this issue.

3. **Flowerbeds and Trees:**
Improper grading of flowerbeds can cause water to pool, potentially leading to water seepage into your home. Additionally, root damage from trees seeking water can contribute to structural issues.

**Flaws in Design and Workmanship**
Human error, including design mistakes, using the wrong materials, or faulty workmanship, can result in structural damage and subsequent water damage. These flaws can remain hidden for extended periods, only becoming apparent months or even years later.

**Aging and Time**
Over time, all structures age and wear out. Floors sag, pipes deteriorate, and various elements of your home may degrade, causing water-related issues. Regular maintenance and timely repairs are essential to mitigate these challenges and prevent water damage.

If you experience water damage in your home, it is important to act quickly to minimize the extent of the damage. Promptly remove any wet furnishings, rugs, or clothing from the affected area.

If possible, open windows and doors to allow for air circulation. If you have a wet/dry vacuum, use it to remove as much water as possible. Place any wet books, magazines, or newspapers in plastic bags and put them in a freezer to prevent further damage.

If you have potted plants in the affected area, try to salvage them by transplanting them into smaller pots.

Once you have taken these initial steps, contact a professional water damage restoration company to begin the cleanup and repair process.

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