Winter is halfway over and spring is on its way here in Portland. These months usually bring lots and lots of rain – and this year is no exception. However, rain isn’t the only way your home can experience water damage. You can have drain backups, clogs, or sump pump damage. Small things like debris piled against your foundation or a misplaced downspout can also cause water intrusion and all of its attendant problems in your home.

Five Ways to Prevent Water Damage

There are many causes of water damage, but there are also several simple actions you can take to help prevent water from getting into your home. Here are five easy things you can do to avoid water damage to your home:

  1. Do a visual inspection in and around your home once every month in the rainy season.

Portland and the surrounding cities usually don’t just have rain. We have wind, hail, freezing temps, and sometimes snow. All of these weather issues can do things like clog your gutters, move the downspout in an unfavorable position, or toss debris into your sewer system. Walking around and through your home can help you spot the problem. You can backtrack things like a puddle in your basement or moisture coming through your walls to issues like a blocked sump pump or a clogged catch basin. This will help you prevent a major problem from occurring during one of our many Pacific Northwest rainstorms.

  1. Remove debris from around your home.

A quick an easy solution for water intrusion into your basement or foundation is to remove any debris piled up against your home. This includes leaf piles, branches, your wood pile, or anything else that could be trapping water and causing it to pool against your basement or foundation wall.

  1. Don’t put these everyday items down the drain.

Several things can block your drains, but these are some of the most common:

  • Flour, potato skins, and grease all coat your pipes in a gluey mess.
  • Produce stickers get stuck in your pipes are rarely wash all the way through your system.
  • Sanitary products like tampons as well as paper towels and cotton balls. These are made to retain water and expand and can easily get stuck in a drain.
  • Paint and joint compound can also easily coat your drains.

Additionally, it’s a great idea to teach your children what goes down the drain and what gets thrown in the trash or compost bin. It may be super fun to watch Legos go down the toilet – but it’s a lot less fun to pay for Clog Busters to come out and retrieve these items from your blocked drains.

  1. Schedule regular maintenance of your sewage and stormwater drains.

Systems that regulate rainwater run off like gutters, downspouts and stormwater drains require regular cleaning and maintenance to keep debris from stopping up the system. However, if you live in an older home, you may also need regular maintenance on your indoor plumbing system.

  1. Get a drain inspection.

Often, drains that back up regularly have something else wrong with them like poor grading that can be repaired. The best way to find out what exactly is wrong with your drain system is to get a video sewer inspection.

Keeping your home dry in our wet weather can seem difficult, but there are many systems in place in your home to keep it snug and dry throughout the rainy season. If you need assistance with any of the above maintenance or repair work, let us know! We are ready to help.