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Invisible Causes of Water Damage
By Kimberly Duncan
Heating & Air Conditioning Systems
Failure to clean and service air conditioners can lead to poor performance, higher operating costs and moisture problems. Moist and dusty cooling ducts promote mold and other water-borne biological growth.
Plumbing fixtures usually develop leaks due to pipe joint, or hose attachment failures.
Internal wall leaks are hard to detect and often result in significant damage.
A damp basement is frequently caused by accumulations of moisture dripping through concrete foundations. The moisture evaporates, increasing indoor humidity even if there are no visible leaks or standing water. Another common cause is condensation on the cold concrete walls and floors during more humid months.
Water heaters, washers, and dryers tend to rust and crack over time, allowing water to drip out. These appliances can leak slowly or cause a flood if severely damaged. Their hoses tend to deteriorate from the inside out, resulting in leaks as well. Damage can be significantly heavier when the leaky appliance is installed upstairs or in an attic.
Kitchen leaks from a worn seal can divert water into walls and wooden countertop supports.
Common pipe problems include blocked toilets and drains (especially kitchen drains, where grease accumulates), stoppages of garbage disposals, roots in sewer lines and deterioration and bursting of water lines.
Others reasons for water damage are unpredictable summer storms, floods, and other water- accompanied disasters such as hurricanes, blizzards, and tornados.