Protecting Your Home Against One of the Most Common and Devastating Risks — Water Damage
There’s a gadget or app for just about everything these days. You can track your sleep, get a live video stream through your doorbell or even feed your dog treats. The way we use these applications has helped us improve our safety, health and generally given us insight that we could have never achieved previously.
Working in insurance, smart home technology in particular has revolutionized how we protect our properties and assets. For example, the advances in home security systems have become incredibly sophisticated. But, so have home monitoring systems — like water detection and shut-off applications.
While other smart home technology is more mainstream — like light systems that allow you to turn your lights on and off from an app — water detection systems have proven to be incredibly helpful and cost saving. Leveraging this important technology, you can monitor your water flow and even turn your pipes on and off, protecting your property against costly damage. However, many homeowners don’t know about these monitoring systems and lose out on the benefits they provide.
Water damage is 5x more likely than theft
In order to even insure a home over $1.5 million, you usually need a state of the art security system. However, with water damage five times more likely to happen at your home than a robbery, we see a water detection system as an essential purchase to secure your home and assets.
In fact, with 40% of homeowners suffering from water damage, our team thinks you really can’t afford to not have one of these systems installed. “I highly recommend you have one on each home — especially in cold-weather states,” Kelly Klee President, Bob Klee, told us. “For example, if you have a new Moen kitchen faucet connected, the app can detect if the pipes are freezing and automatically turn the water on so that they don’t freeze.”
Is my home really at risk?
There are a variety of factors that affect your home’s susceptibility to water damage, and it goes much deeper than just having an older home with aging pipes. These include:
You’re more at risk for water damage if…
- • You have aging pipes
- • You have multiple water-connected appliances like wet bars or ice makers
- • You have multiple supply lines
- • You have an older water heater, which after 8-10 years will typically start to corrode
- • You have multiple bathrooms
- • A second floor washing machine
- • You have a second home which may go unoccupied for longer periods
Common causes of water damage…
- • Plumbing or appliance failures to home appliances like a washing machine, dishwasher, water softener, water filtration system or ice marker
- • Aging water heater that fails or leaks
- • Overflow of plumbing fixtures
- • Faulty construction
- • Burst pipes due to freezing, age, improper installation or lack of maintenance
How does this actually work?
There are a variety of applications on the market like Flo-Logic, Leak Defense, FLO by Moen and WaterCop. While they all work on their own platforms, these devices and monitoring applications work by detecting water flow in your pipes, then compiling that information into an application where you can monitor it. There are also alert systems set in place, often that can even be customized.
Having this essential monitoring, insight and alert system directly helps homeowners avoid pricey mistakes that can be caused by faulty water systems, leaks, poor installation, accidental damage and neglect. Working with our team, we’ll always ensure you have a great insurance policy and provider to protect you in case this damage happens. However, the inconvenience of repair time and loss of personal property can be frustrating. Having a water monitoring system, though, can help mitigate these losses.
Here, we wanted to give you two important examples of how these applications actually work and can help protect your home — both stories from our CEO and President.
Water monitoring systems can save you from pricy bills
Klee, who uses the FLO by Moen, says this application saved him from expensive water bills twice in just the first 30-days of getting it installed.
“I have a 19,000 gallon pool, and just last year, I forgot that I was topping up the water, left home and came back to find my pool overflowing. I got a huge water bill,” Klee explained. “After I got FLO, they would actually call me after 30-minutes to tell me about an abnormal amount of water based on my normal use — for reference, one garden hose at full blast is about 200 gallons of water in 30 min. So when they call, they give me two choices, hang up and they shut it off, or press 2 and they let it run. Easy as that, and it’s saved me a lot of money.”
Or from costly damages and months of renovations
Our CEO, Jon Kelly told us that he wished he had saved himself from the grief and inconvenience of water damage by having one of these systems installed before it was too late.
“I was at my vacation home when I found out that there was a huge flood in the basement of my newly-built primary home. As it turned out, a water pipe on an exterior wall had burst while we were away, flooding the basement with thousands of gallons of water,” Kelly told us.
“I was insured by Chubb at the time and they were amazing, as you’d expect. The adjuster was kind, compassionate and helpful. Unfortunately, the water mitigation was an enormous job. We had to get the water cleared out, everything dried out, and then have contractors in for months replacing and repairing the flooring, baseboards, and paint. For months, we learned to live with the noise and a constant stream of folks working on the house — essentially living in a construction zone.”
Save yourself the headache and make the investment
Kelly left us with some sage advice, saying from his experience, two things became totally clear. “First, only use an insurer that is committed to fully restoring their customers and knows how to treat them such as Chubb (available through Kelly Klee along with other fine insurers). Second, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. I sure wish that we would have had a water shut-off device installed to save ourselves the headaches involved in the mitigation efforts.”