The Hidden Dangers of Water LeaksNovember 22, 2017 9:30 am
As any homeowner will tell you, a lot of household problems can be ignored for a while. Water leaks don’t belong in this category; if they’re not repaired in time, water leaks can cause a lot of structural problems. In most cases, standing water will cause untold damage to your tanks, pipes and underfloor heating. Additionally, your water bill could get out of control fairly quickly.
However, water leaks also come with some hidden dangers that are often overlooked. The most common of these dangers are mold and mildew, which thrive in dark and damp conditions. They can spread throughout your home’s structure in no time, and it won’t take them long before they start invading your furniture and clothing as well. If you have water leaks in areas that are hard to see – behind the walls or under the floors, for example – you can count on mold and mildew to appear.
Why are mold and mildew such a big deal? Because they can cause a lot of health problems for you and your family. Respiratory issues, asthmatic symptoms and allergic inflammations are all conditions commonly associated with mold and mildew, and the list doesn’t stop there. Children and the elderly are particularly vulnerable to these problems, mostly due to their high sensitivity to physical stimuli.
The main problem with mold and mildew is that they’re very good at keeping out of sight. In many cases, you’ll start experiencing health issues before even noticing that the problem exists. Mildew also has a distinct odor that might tip you off that something’s wrong, but at that point it could already be too late to handle the problem on your own. Getting rid of mold and mildew is a costly affair, even without taking the structural damage into account.
As you might imagine, the best defense against water leaks is prevention. If the leaks don’t develop, there won’t be any need to worry about the consequences. A routine inspection of your floors and the plumbing system is a good start, and you can also check your water bill for any irregularities. If your fees are higher than they should be, there’s a chance you have a slow water leak on your hands.
In case of experiencing a water leak, it’s probably in your best interest to contact the professionals immediately. In most situations, the extent of the structural damage won’t be apparent at first sight, and an expert’s help could prove invaluable. When your health – and the health of your family – is on the line, there’s no need to take risks by trying to fix the water leak problem on your own.
Vincent J. Attardo is the President/CEO of Coastline Environmental Solutions, Inc. He provides Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) investigations, mold and bacteria testing, water damage/mold remediation and repair, and is available for consultation and public speaking. For more information please visit www.coastlineclean.com. Readers may contact him at 800-847-3867 or email at [email protected]