So You Had a Water Leak — What's Next?

So You Had a Water Leak — What's Next?

Water leaks are anxiety-inducing problems that can result in significant damage and costly repairs. When your Notion Sensor alerts you to a water leak, your heart will start racing, but the early warning will help you take steps to reduce damage and repair costs. Water leaks are inevitable, accounting for around 10,000 gallons of wasted water annually, but your Notion Sensors will help you respond quickly and appropriately to recover. 

The First Steps 

Once your Notion Sensor alerts you to a water leak, the first thing you should do is turn off the water at the source — an under-sink shutoff or a valve near your washing machine, for instance. If the leak continues or no specific shutoff is available, shut off the water at the main. The main water shutoff valve (either a knob or switch) will be near the pipe where water enters your home. Some shutoff valves are outside, while others could be in the basement, the garage, or a main-floor utility area. 

Once you've shut off the water, check out the area where your Notion Sensor noticed the leak. Water might still be leaking as the pipes empty. If the leak is significant enough to cause structural problems or other dangers, bring your children and pets outside and call an emergency plumber.  

If the leak is minor, take a photo so you can find the spot when the water stops flowing. Remove any valuables near the leak to prevent additional damage and begin the clean-up process.  

Clean Up the Mess 

Water can do damage where you can't see it. Since it flows downward, it will seep into floorboards, walls, and the ceilings below. To prevent costly damage, quickly clean up the water with towels or wet vac, then look for damage below the surface. You might hear the water dripping or flowing before you see it, so turn off distracting sounds and listen carefully. If the water leak happened on the second floor or the first floor above the basement, check out the ceiling below the leak.  

If you wait too long to clean the damage, water will soak into carpet, wood and drywall. Mold can begin developing within 24–48 hours if you don't clean all the water (here are the signs of mold and what to do about it). You can speed up the drying process by placing fans and dehumidifiers around the moisture. Some areas might need to be disinfected to remove mold or mildew. If possible, open windows to encourage air circulation, and know that some homes need a few days to completely dry out.  

Determine the Issue 

Several problems can cause water damage. Leaks can come from malfunctioning appliances and broken, rusty, or corroded pipes. Water damage in your home can also come from inclement weather, roof damage, and sewer problems. Clogged gutters can also cause water to get into your walls and foundation. Your Notion Sensor's placement will help you determine the cause of the leak.  

If the problem is significant, call your insurance company. Take photos of structural damage and personal belongings so your insurance company can determine how to help you.  

Fixing the Problem 

Some problems can be easy to fix but think twice before you attempt a DIY repair. All too often, a small leak is a symptom of a larger problem. If the leak is minor and you can repair it, do what you can, then call your plumber to inspect your plumbing for hidden issues. If the problem is serious, you'll want to call an emergency plumber and leave the water turned off to prevent further leaks and damage.  

Check Your Notion Sensor 

Your Notion Sensors are water-resistant, and they can be used again after detecting a water leak. If your sensor was submerged during the leak, we recommend following these simple tips to help dry out your sensor.  

Placing Notion Sensors in laundry rooms and bathrooms, near water heaters, and in cabinets with plumbing saves homeowners from the headaches caused by water leaks. If you haven't placed them in other wet areas, it's time to add more to key locations.  

Swift Action Is the Best Solution After a Leak 

Your Notion Sensor did its job by alerting you to the water leak. Keep in mind that Notion Sensors will only send alerts from areas where you've placed them. Be strategic about where you place them. For example, when placing one near a washing machine, place it near the water supply hose into the machine or near the door where the seal may fail. If you've missed potentially problematic areas, you won't know you have a leak unless you see the puddles or hear the drips.  

Notion Sensors will alert you to issues in your home even when you aren't there. Many homeowners also use them to detect temperature irregularities due to open windows and doors. You can also use them alongside your smoke detector so you receive a smartphone notification if the alarm goes off when you aren't home. These affordable sensors can save you a serious amount of money. Be sure you place them strategically throughout your home so you can act quickly after a leak occurs.