Water Alarm Could Have Prevented Basement Flood Disaster: Customer Case Study

Water AlarmTis the season for cold weather, ice and snow…and the threat of frozen pipes and ensuing floods.  Many kinds of disasters can cause water damage to your home.  Fortunately, there are also many devices on the market for water leak detection.  A water alarm will notify you as soon as a water leak or flood is detected so you can address the problem immediately.  Here is a real life story of a homeowner who had an unusual problem with a frozen pipe which prompted him to run out and buy a water alarm.

On a cold December evening, Bill Coleman arrived home from work and heard the sound of rushing water in his basement.  He quickly discovered that the water main supply pipe had frozen and burst.  Water was spraying everywhere!  He tried to thwart the damage by shutting off the water at the home’s main valve, but that proved fruitless because the crack was between the water main valve and the street.

Bill placed a frantic call to the town and they dispatched an emergency DPW crew.  It took 45 minutes for the crew to arrive on the scene and turn the water off at the street.  By that time Bill’s basement had taken on more than four inches of water.  Based on the rate that the water was pouring in, the DPW estimated that the pipe broke only 15 minutes before Bill had arrived home.

“In one short hour, my basement took on four inches of water and I had extensive damage to the floor, walls, ceiling, and furniture,” Bill says.  “Imagine what a mess there would have been if I had gotten home 8 hours later?”

What really troubled Bill was that because the break in the pipe was before his home’s water main valve, he couldn’t turn the water off himself.  He had always worried about frozen pipes and had already installed a power failure/freeze alarm monitoring system by Reliance Controls that would automatically notify him by phone if his heat went out.  Now, after this recent incident with the broken water main pipe, he began searching for a similar alarm dialer that would also notify him of a water leak.  He was happy to learn that Reliance Controls now offers a more advanced model called the THP201 that monitors for power failures, freezing and flooding.  And, it costs only a few dollars more than his previous system.

“I learned the hard way that a pipe can freeze and burst for reasons other than a power outage or furnace failure, and being able to detect the ensuing water leak is the only way to protect yourself,” says Bill.  “Even an automatic water shut off valve – which will address 99% of in-home floods or water leakageswould not have helped in my situation.  For an extra layer of protection, I suggest adding an auto alarm dialer like I did.”

Water damage can happen at any time and the results can be devastating very quickly.  For less than $100 you can purchase a do-it-yourself device that will alert you of a water leak in your basement or near an appliance like a washing machine or dishwasher.   For more information on selecting a water alarm, contact diycontrols.com.

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