Signs of Water Damage in Your Home

Knowing what to do if you think you have water damage is very important as it can help you save a lot of money. You can easily identify the signs and ask for repairs before the damage becomes too big and too costly. Even though preventing water damage restoration is sometimes impossible, you can gain control over rectification procedures by knowing the signs to look out. You can prevent damage to the property structure and avoid health complications that can arise from exposure to the effects of water damage like mold.

Table of Contents

What Are The Signs of Water Damage in Your Home?

Presence of Mold

The most common sign of the presence of too much moisture is usually mold. The mold remediation process can remove any mold from your home. Any surface in your home that has mold growth is an indication that you have water damage. The mold can be any color, but black ones are the most common. In some cases, you’ll have a “moldy smell” to indicate that the area is too damp. This is very common in hidden areas like under the carpet, and it can be compared to the smell of wet cardboard.

Peeling Walls

Another common sign of water damage is flaking or peeling of your drywalls. Sometimes the wall may crack instead. These signs can also be present in the ceiling or floors, and they show that interior sections of those surfaces are too wet.


Water stains can be unpleasant to look at, but they can also lead to bigger problems if not checked as soon as possible. Check your walls, ceilings, and your cabinets for any discoloration. The stains start as yellowish, but with time it becomes more concentrated and darker. Darker stains on white or plain surfaces could mean that the water damage has been happening for longer.


Leaking surfaces usually create puddles. If you find a pool of water in your home and it comes back after you clean it up, then you may have issues with your water. Sometimes you may not see where the water is coming from, but sometimes you may hear the water running. Sounds of dripping or running water that you’re not controlling could mean very big problems and should be checked immediately. You should also pay attention to any changes in the sounds your water systems produce.

More Bills

Water bills are usually paid monthly, which means that you already know an average of what you spend. If your bills suddenly become too high, you could be having a leak you’re not aware of. It means you are using more water than you usually do.

How Long Does It Take For Water Damage To Show?

The duration that water damage takes before showing any signs depend on the amount of water causing the damage. For instance, water damage from busted pipes or natural occurrences like storms will happen instantly. However, a smaller amount of water, like in cracked pipes, will take longer before the damage becomes too extensive and noticeable. However, regardless of how long it takes to show, water damage can result in physical and health issues that can end up costing you a lot of money to fix.

The duration that water damage takes to show also depends on the affected surface. For instance, water inside the wall may take up to one day before showing, while damage on carpets and books will show instantly. Sometimes walls take longer before they start to bulge due to swelling. Other surfaces like the ceiling may take up to one week before signs like mold growth show that there is water damage. Water damage on the structural areas of the house may also take more than two weeks before showing.

What Do You Do If Your House Has Water Damage?

If you have home insurance, your first action should be to call the company to report the water damage. You will have to wait for the company’s agent to assess the damage, but you can ensure your safety by turning off your electricity as you wait for the agent. You should also wear protective clothing like gloves and boots to prevent bacterial infections. Try to salvage whatever you can as well, after taking pictures of the damage.

Cleaning the house as soon as possible is also essential. Seek help from professionals and wait for their clearance before getting back into the house. The damaged surfaces will have to be replaced. The damp items will also have to be removed from the house during cleaning before the excess moisture is also eliminated. After drying out the house completely, you can turn the electricity back on.

Drying the house is the most important aspect of the cleanup process. If not done properly, there will be mold and mildew in the home. The entire process can be too much for a non-professional to handle. You should hire a good restoration company that will ensure that the restoration is done professionally.

Can You Live In a House With Water Damage?

Whether you can live in the house after water damage depends on the extent of the damage, if it’s minimal, you can stay there as the restoration process takes place. However, if the damage is too much, you will have to move elsewhere to avoid compromising your health. The water source also matters and can determine whether you get to remain in the house or not. For instance, you can stay if the water is from appliances like washing machines or clean pipes. However, if it’s from the sewage system, your health will be compromised. If the water has affected the rooms you commonly use, it will not be safe for you to live there. If the damage is in rooms that you rarely use, then you can remain there.

What To Do If You Think You Have Water Damage In Your House

The restoration process of water damage may take longer and can cause a lot of discomfort for you. Working with a professional, such as ServiceMaster Fire & Water Restoration Services when starting the cleanup process is your best option. You can leave the house if the noise and the fumes become too much for you to handle. The restoration process may take different duration depending on the number of rooms with water and the amount of leaking water.