You might be surprised at the extent of damage that we witness from water damage. We routinely go out on calls to homes that have experienced various types of emergencies, and we’re accustomed to dealing with all levels of disasters. But still, it’s always amazing to witness just how destructive water can be.

In many cases, the water damage that we witness could have been prevented or at least minimized if the homeowner had taken certain preventive steps. So to help you avoid this type of calamity within your home, we wanted to share ten things you can do to prevent water damage (or at least reduce the amount of destruction if you do experience an event).

Learn where your water shut-off valve is located. In the event of a broken pipe or other plumbing emergency, you can quickly switch off the water supply to your home and greatly reduce the amount of damage.

Maintain appliances that use water. Replace hoses before they become brittle and break, and clean out your dishwasher filter at the first sign of a clog.

Investigate odd smells. Particularly if it smells like mildew, musty or odd smells can be an early sign of a leak somewhere.

Maintain water pressure. If the water pressure within your plumbing system goes over 100 psi, the excess force can damage hoses and other parts of your appliances.

Keep an eye on your water bill. Unusually high bills can be a sign of a hidden leak somewhere.

Install water detection devices along with appliances that use water. They can notify you immediately of a leak.

Clean your gutters and downspouts twice per year. Clogged gutters and downspouts are a major contributing factor to water damage.

Check your roof condition regularly. Repair any damage that could lead to a leaking roof over time.

Be careful with landscaping. Don’t install trees or shrubs whose roots can interfere with plumbing.

Winterize your home if it’s ever needed. We rarely have to worry about freezing temps around here, but keep this in mind, just in case.

And if you ever do experience a water damage event, call us immediately. Prompt attention to the problems can minimize the amount of problems you’ll experience later.