Amica Insurance is encouraging everyone to participate in the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Fix a Leak Week in March, an annual reminder to check household plumbing fixtures and irrigation systems for leaks.
A leaky toilet, faucet, showerhead or valve may seem minor, but these types of leaks can lead to costly utility bills and waste a lot of water over time. According to the EPA, more than 10,000 gallons of water are lost each year from leaks in the average household. The good news is that fixing these leaks can be relatively simple and save you up to 10% on your water bill.
Finding standing or pooling water is an unmistakable sign that you may have a problem, but there are other indicators you can look for:
- A musty odor similar to that of wet paper can be the first sign of a water problem, especially when coupled with a humid feeling in the room.
- Ceiling discoloration is one of the easiest places to spot a problem in your home. If you see brown or yellow stains – and if they seem to be getting larger – check the space above the ceiling or the roof to see if you can find the source.
- Misshapen floors, including warping, buckling, bulging, sagging, soft and spongy spots, and sinking, may be detected by feeling them before you see the damage.
- Damaged walls may begin to flex or warp when they are saturated with water, but you’ll also be able to notice a change in the paint or wallpaper.
- Unusual sounds – like dripping or sloshing in the walls or cabinets – mean there may be an issue. Try to locate the source to see if there's any visible moisture, and then call a professional plumber to come check it out.
- A significant change in your water bill is one of the strongest signs of a problem, if your household’s daily water usage has not varied.
Water leaks are one of the leading causes of homeowner insurance claims, and the best way to prevent water damage is to find and stop a leak quickly. That's why Amica has partnered with manufacturers of leak detection devices to offer discounts on the purchase of these devices. Users of these devices may also receive a discount on their homeowners policy. For more details, visit our Smarter Home Savings page.