Owning a home is a dream shared by many. Home ownership provides many benefits, such as financial security and stability, the pride of ownership, and a special place to raise a family.
Homeownership also comes with a number of responsibilities, such as cutting the grass, shoveling snow, and completing minor repairs.
While many insurance companies were started because of devastating fires destroying their communities, today a common cause of property damage is water. A burst pipe, clogged toilet, or a failing water heater can send thousands of gallons of water through your home.
Statistics have shown that your home is more likely to experience damage from water than from fire or burglary.
Below is information on:
- Home monitoring/detection systems;
- Signs you have a leak;
- Buying guides/reviews;
- Insurance coverage; and
- Links to systems.
Home monitoring/detection systems
1. Home water flow monitoring system. A water flow monitoring system is attached to your water main and protects your entire house. The system works by measuring water flow into your house. If it detects continuous water flow beyond the normal stopping and starting of your everyday appliances, it stops the flow of water into your house automatically.
2. Home water flow monitoring system with sensors. This type of water flow monitoring system includes sensors that are strategically placed around your house. Depending on the sensor, it can measure water leaks, as well as temperature and humidity changes. When connected to a hub or your home Wi-Fi, alerts can be sent to your smartphone. The shutoff valve will automatically stop the flow of water into your house, with this system as well.
3. Water leak sensors. These sensors are strategically placed around your house. Locations include:
- Ice makers;
- Water heaters;
- Wash machines; and
- Showers and tubs.
The difference between this system and the others is that it sounds an alarm and may send a text message to your phone. However, it doesn’t shut off the flow of water to your house. If you’re home, this system will alert you with plenty of time to turn the water off yourself. If you’re away from home, have a back-up plan set up with your kids or neighbors.
If you’re leaving your home for an extended period, it’s best to shut off your water at your water main. Even though a leak will still cause damage, the water flow won’t be continuous.
Signs you have a leak
Sometimes plumbing problems aren’t obvious and the damage occurs slowly over time. Here are few things you can watch for in case you have a leaky pipe in your home.
1. Check your water bill. If you notice a significant increase in your bill, this may be a sign of a leak.
2. Listen for the ticking of your water meter. If your water meter is constantly ticking, this may be a good indicator that you have a leak.
3. Check for wet spots/water marks. On a regular basis, inspect areas near your sinks, tubs, and toilets. If you see discoloring or wet spots, you may have a leak. Consider placing a small towel in your cabinets near the drainpipes. If you have a small leak, the towel will prevent it from soaking through and it may be easier to notice.
If you’re interested in learning more about different products available, please check out the links below.
Depending on your insurance policy and the coverage provided, water damage may or may not be covered. Water damage to your home caused by a burst pipe or water heater is covered under a West Bend policy. However, damage to your home caused by a flood would not be covered unless you have a policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.
In addition, if your basement is flooded due sump pump overflow/sewer backup a West Bend policy would provide coverage if you purchased it. Four coverage limits give you the flexibility to carry just the right amount of coverage for your finished or unfinished basement.
If you have a home monitoring/detection system that sends you an alert when it detects water, you may be eligible for a discount on a West Bend Home and Highway insurance policy. To learn more, contact your independent West Bend agent or find an agent near you by visiting www.thesilverlining.com.
Links to home monitoring/detection systems
Do you have any tips you’d like to share? I’d love to hear them; please share them in the box below.
West Bend does not endorse these products.