Have You Checked Your Home Plumbing After The Recent Storms?
The recent floods in Port Macquarie have left many homes and businesses with extensive property damage and without clean water and power. While utility companies are working round the clock to restore services, many homes are still left without power more than a week later.
But even when full services are restored, the situation is far from over. Many home and business owners then face the daunting task of ensuring their property is safe and habitable.
Flooding can cause hidden damage to your home
Extensive flooding saturates the ground around affected properties, causing it to shift. This weakens the foundations and causes plumbing and drainage pipes to crack. Sewage pipes can also become blocked by silt brought in by floodwaters.
These issues need to be identified early because if left unchecked, they can cause extensive damage to the foundations of your property. Broken pipes may also cause sewage to backflow into your property, spreading bacteria.
So, in this blog, we are going to cover the basic steps you need to take to ensure your plumbing is working properly and your roof is safe after a flood.
Warning: You must ensure your home is safe before entering. If you suspect that your home has sustained damage, always call a professional to inspect it before you enter the property.
How to check your plumbing
Shut off the mains water and gas supply to your home
If you have not already done so, shut off the mains water supply. This can be done by turning the stopcock, which is usually located under the kitchen sink. If you have natural gas, you should also turn off the gas shut-off valve, which is usually located next to your gas metre.
Check the pipes inside and outside your home
With the water and gas shut off, you can check the pipes both inside and outside your property. Specifically, you are looking for any cracks which will already show signs of leaking. You may need a flashlight to inspect pipes under the floorboards.
Look for sewage backing up in the toilet or bathtub
Next, look for signs of sewage backing up in the toilet or bathtub. This is a sure sign that your main sewer pipe is blocked. Don’t attempt to unblock the pipe yourself, as you may make the problem worse, so contact a plumber immediately.
Check for water pools or subsidence
Once floodwaters have fully receded, you should also check the grounds surrounding your property for signs of water pools or subsidence. If the ground has sunk or is saturated in one area, your main sewage pipe may have cracked.
How to check your roof
Visually inspect your roof for missing tiles or shingles
Once it is safe to return to your home, you should carry out a quick visual inspection of the roof for damage. Don’t climb up there, just make sure there are no obvious missing tiles or shingles from the ground.
If you notice damage, don’t attempt to fix it yourself. A damaged roof may be structurally unsafe. Get in contact with our fully qualified and licensed roofers to get your roof thoroughly inspected.
Make sure the gutters are secure and not blocked
You should also check that the gutters are still mounted securely and not blocked by debris. This can easily be done from the ground with a hosepipe. If you notice damage, the cost of repairing it will be covered by your insurance company, so don’t attempt to fix it yourself. Guttering is often one of the most vulnerable parts of your roof during storms and can affect your home’s health long after the storm has passed if it’s not in top shape.
Need help? Give us a call
If you would like to ensure your property’s plumbing and roofing is safe following the recent storms, get in touch with us today to arrange an inspection.
We are located in Port Macquarie and have licensed plumbers and roofing contractors available to carry out inspections at short notice.