A water heater is a convenience, supplying houses with hot water. However, like all appliances that use water, the water heater has the potential to flood and cause water damage to the home. A water heater can also become flooded due to plumbing issues or natural disasters.
What is water heater flooding?
The average water heater has a lifespan of 10 years. An essential appliance, the water heater can function for years without issue. All of a sudden, however, the homeowner might discover the unit has sprung a leak. A water heater failure can cause sizeable water damage to the home.
An aging water heater will inevitably start to fail. A likelihood of failure is the reason homeowners should periodically check the water heater for signs of leaks. Skipping routine inspections of the appliance can cause small leaks to go unnoticed and costly water damage to the home.
Experts advise homeowners to replace the water heater before the 10-year mark is up—even if the water heater appears to function without issue. The cost of replacement will be less than the price tag associated with repairing major water damage to the floors, drywall, and furniture.
How is water heater flooding repaired?
Homeowners can take basic steps to address water heater flooding before calling in a water damage restoration company. Wear protective clothing, like rubber boots and gloves. Check the temperature of the floodwater to ensure it is not exceedingly hot and to prevent scalding.
Do not enter a flooded area filled with steam. Inspect the premises to ensure outlets and wires are not submerged in water, which can cause an electrical shock. If the area is safe to enter, locate the water supply that sends cold water into the heater and turn it off.
Once the leak has stopped, switch off the gas or electricity in order to protect the heater. Relieve any existing pressure in the pipes throughout the home by opening all the hot-water faucets, such as those in the kitchen sink, bathroom sinks, and showers.
The next step is to dry the areas affected by water damage. Thick towels can absorb manageable amounts of water on the floors. Use a shop vac to extract several inches of water. Introduce airflow by opening windows and doors and by running fans and a dehumidifier.
Replace water damaged carpeting. Pull out the damp carpets quickly, before they have a chance to cause water damage to the bordering drywall and baseboards. Mold can grow within a short span of 24 to 48 hours, so address the water damaged carpets and floors right away.
Contact the homeowner’s insurance agent to determine coverage for the water damage. Then call a water damage restoration service to complete the drying procedure. Qualified, professional services are necessary, since water damage cleanup experts find and repair even hidden water damage.
What causes a water heater to flood?
A flooded water heater is most often caused by a natural disaster or a plumbing issue. Fierce storms can unleash large amounts of floodwater that can damage not only the exterior and interior parts of the home but also appliances, like the water heater.
Can a flooded water heater be repaired?
Repairing a water heater that has been submerged in water is impractical and unsafe. The conductivity and corrosiveness of water renders the water heater unsafe to operate, repair, or install. The insulation will be soaked in water, resulting in exterior corrosion and ultimate failure of the unit.
Controls that have been under water can explode or burst into flames when attempting to use them. Even if submerged controls seem operative, they are serious fire hazards. In gas units, fires or explosions can occur; in electric units, shocks or fires can cause significant damage.
Due to the hazardous nature of attempting to operate a flooded water heater, homeowners are urged to replace the damaged appliance with a new unit. Prior to replacing the appliance, the flooded water heater should be removed from the home and made unusable.
Replacement of the water heater should be done regardless of whether the unit is electric, gas-fired, or oil-fired. In electric water heaters, the floodwater will cause the thermostat and controls to corrode. Similarly, in gas units, the valves and controls will become corroded with floodwater.
A qualified contractor, not the homeowner, should handle the replacement work of the flooded water heater. Ensure the temperature relief valve is new. Also, while researching various water heater models, consider purchasing an energy-efficient one that will lower future energy bills.
What to do if your water heater fails?
If you’re experiencing water heater failure, follow the steps in this video to troubleshoot the problem.
Who to call for water damage restoration?
Whether your water damage was caused by water heater flooding, a natural disaster, or any other common cause, call the flood damage restoration pros at ServiceMaster DAK for immediate professional attention. We’ll ensure your water damaged property is quickly restored to its original condition.
Water damage should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent the spread of destruction. Porous materials, such as wood and drywall, rapidly absorb moisture. Discoloration, swelling, and floor separation can occur when excess dampness is left untreated for prolonged periods of time.
The IICRC certified technicians at ServiceMaster DAK work swiftly to limit water damage and conduct repairs. We use powerful equipment to extract all standing water. Air movers are installed to remove moisture and prevent mold growth. Our specialists also work with homeowner’s insurance.
The category of water (clean, gray, or black) impacts the restoration process. Toxic black water from sewage, for instance, requires a different type of handling. Hot water from a water heater also requires a specific approach. Our experts will determine the type of water that led to the damage.
Choose ServiceMaster DAK when you are faced with a case of flood damage, we service Chicago North Shore and Northwest Suburbs. Our highly skilled and experienced technicians will respond right away to your water damage disaster. Call us 24 hours a day for emergency water damage cleanup.