Be it a minor leak or pipe burst caused by freezing, water damage can cause significant financial losses to your business. Water damage not only spoils your carpets and drywalls, but also damages your inventory and equipment and encourages mold growth. It may even cause temporary business closures, affecting your operations and income. Therefore, it is crucial to take measures to prevent it.
Here are some simple tips to prevent water damage at your business:
Clean Gutters and Drains
Debris and fallen leaves might clog your drains and gutters, allowing water to accumulate, thus damaging the interior and exterior walls. So, regularly inspect and clean your gutters and downspouts.
Close Gaps and Cracks
Seal any holes, cracks, or gaps in your foundation and exterior walls to prevent cold air from entering your building. Such gaps can expose your pipes to freezing temperatures, causing damage.
Keep Your Roof Clean
The accumulation of ice and snow can result in ice dams that damage the roofing materials and structure. So, regularly inspect your roof during winter to remove the excess snow and ice.
Monitor Your Thermostat
If your thermostat is set lower than 50 degrees, your pipes will freeze. Make sure your thermostat is not set below this range even when the building is vacant or during weekends. Replace batteries in your thermostat regularly or as required to ensure its proper functioning.
Cover Exposed Pipes
Exposed pipes are more likely to freeze. Over time, the frozen water will create pressure in the pipes, causing them to burst, leading to flooding or structural damage to your building. Therefore, properly insulate your exposed pipes to protect them from freezing.
Know the Location of the Shut-Off Valve
Knowing your building’s water supply shut-off valve will help you close it as soon as the pipe bursts. This will help prevent flooding and other water damage until you repair the problem.
Keep Your Sprinkler and HVAC Systems Well-Maintained
Plumbing, HVAC, and sprinkler systems are the major sources of water damage in commercial buildings. Even a minor leak can aggravate into a major issue requiring expensive repairs and clean-ups. So, schedule regular inspections and maintenance to ensure they work well.
Have an Evacuation Plan
Having an evacuation plan will help ensure a quicker exit out of the building if water damage causes flooding, thus ensuring the safety and well-being of all on the premises.
Buy Commercial Insurance Policy
No matter how well you prepare to prevent water damage, you can’t completely avoid it. For example, a thunderstorm can damage your roof, causing leaks that could damage your building’s structure, resulting in hefty losses. Drain overflow, external flooding, and backed sewer lines are inevitable. This is why you should buy business insurance to cover your valuable assets against the unforeseen.
While a basic insurance policy covers some water damage, such as leaks and burst pipes, you can buy additional endorsements to enjoy extensive coverage, including:
- Flood Insurance –
Covers water damage caused by external flooding.
- Business Interruption Insurance –
Covers income loss and relocation expenses if you have to temporarily close your business after covered water damage.