Water damage is one of the leading causes for home and property insurance claims in Ontario. We’ve outlined what you need to know about how to prevent water damage in your home.
When it comes to water, even the smallest amount in your home can cause a major problem, resulting in a home insurance claim. Water damage can be caused by sewer backup, broken pipes, leaky plumbing, and flooding.
*It’s important you understand that not all types of water damage are covered on your insurance policy. Speak with your insurance broker for further clarification as to what your particular policy covers.
Understanding the impact of water damage in your home
Considering how widespread water damage is throughout Ontario, it’s important that you inform yourself and ensure you have proper home and property insurance coverage. We recommend speaking with your insurance broker once a year to review your insurance policy and get familiar with your coverage.
Preventative tips that will help reduce your risk
We all know we have no control over Mother Nature; however, we can implement preventative measures to help reduce our risk of having unwanted water in our home. The following tips have been adopted by the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s guide to residential water damage.
OUTSIDE YOUR HOME:
- Maintain property checks to review if anything (patio, decks, etc.) have shifted over time.
- Clean eaves troughs and downspouts to ensure proper drainage.
- Make sure downspouts extend at least six feet from your basement wall. Water should drain away from your house, and neighbouring houses, toward the street or backyard.
- Disconnect downspouts connected directly to the French drain, or weeping tile (a trench filled with gravel or containing a perforated pipe that redirects surface water or groundwater away from your home) or sanitary sewer laterals (pipes that connect your home’s plumbing system to your municipal sewer system).
- Ensure you caulk window trim and door frames and install weather stripping on exterior doors and windows.
- Always clear snow away from the foundation of your house and keep water out of window wells.
INSIDE YOUR HOME:
- Learn where your water shut-off valve is located and how to use it.
- Don’t pour fats, oils, and grease down your drains.
- Have all appliances, water heaters, electrical panels, furnaces and oil tanks raised above-anticipated flood levels.
- Install a backwater valve as recommended by your municipality. Some municipalities may offer subsidies to offset the installation cost.
- Use water-resistant building materials below ground level.
- Reduce home water use during heavy rainfalls.
- Avoid keeping valuable items in the basement.
We understand that navigating water damage isn’t simple; we hope we've got you thinking about proactive measures you can implement. Contact Youngs Insurance if you have any questions or would like a no-obligation personal property insurance quote.
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