Avoiding Water Damage to your Home

Posted on October 22, 2020

When thinking about reasons to buy Homeowners insurance, most people are worried about a fire burning down their home.  Some are surprised to learn Water Damage is actually the number one cause of damage to people’s homes.  Some losses are weather related, while others may be caused by problems with the plumbing or an appliance.

This article is going to focus on how you can prevent water damage – regardless of how it is caused.  Specifically we are going to look at two devices that can help reduce water damage: Water Detectors and Automatic Water Shutoff Valves.

Water Detectors

Water detectors are devices typically set up anywhere in your home that may be susceptible to leaks or water pooling.  Under or near appliances, kitchen and bathroom fixtures, and other equipment in the home are common places to place these such as washing machines, dish washers, sinks, toilets, and water heaters.  Most of these water detecting devices have either a wire or other sensor which is placed on the floor to detect the water.

In addition to an actual leak or water pooling, many of these devices help to reduce the risk of frozen pipes and mold with additional sensors to detect low temperature and high humidity.  Notification can be either a loud audible sound or send an alert to your smart phone – or both.  You know that there is water, now you need to do something.

Many water detectors can also be connected to an automatic water shutoff value – see below.

Automatic Water Shutoff Valves

Automatic Water Shutoff Valves monitor water pressure and flow rate to identify everything from small leaks to major pipe bursts and react accordingly.  These devices attempt to learn your regular water usage and will notify you when they identify a small issue (for example if you have a dipping faucet) or shut the water off to the entire house when it identifies a dramatic change (an indicator of a burst pipe or larger leak from a water heater).

These devices can also allow you to monitor the systems and notify you of a problem via your smart phone.  There are different sizes and types based on your home and lifestyle and a battery backup can ensure uninterrupted protection during a power outage.  While it is highly recommended that you hire a licensed plumber for installation, some can be installed by an ambitious handy homeowner.

Products and Purchasing

There are a number of products out there to consider.  You can also find these products in hardware and retail stores online or locally.

  • Some companies are uniquely focused on these products:
    • Flo by Moen
    • Flume
    • StreamLabs
    • Phyn
    • Sentinel
    • FloLogic
  • While others have been household names in alarms or other household products for years:
    • Honeywell
    • Grohe
    • Energizer

Insurance Considerations

While there is coverage in many situations for water damage, most homeowner policies have minimal, if any, coverage for flood, ground water seepage or sewer backup.  There are also exclusions and limitations for coverage for mold.

Combining good practices at home to prevent damage and a broad insurance portfolio is the best way to protect your home and financial security.  At Aronson Insurance, we work with thousands of Massachusetts’s homeowners.  We can review your current coverages and identify additional ways to protect yourself.  If you would like to review your Homeowners’, Flood and other insurance, contact us today at 781-444-3050.

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