how to tell if water damage is new or old

How to Tell if Water Damage is New or Old

If you have water damage in your home then it’s important to find out the source and get it corrected right away. Water damage is always something to take seriously. Even just a small amount of water can do a lot of damage in your home or office space. It’s important that you treat this problem as soon as you find it. So, how to tell if water damage is new or old? It’s always best to get it checked by a professional to be sure, but here are some tips that might help you.

Here’s how to tell if water damage is new or old:

  • Look for rings – Water damage will usually discolor your drywall, ceiling panels, your walls and other materials. If you see rings in these water stains, then it might mean you have old water damage. Why is that? When water first starts to seep into your home it will dry out and then leave stains on the area it leaked. Then when it leaks again, you will get new stains, but they will spread out from the original leak and make new stains, forming a ring. Each time it leaks, new rings will form. This is telltale sign that you have an older leak.
  • You have mold – If you have visible mold in your property, then that is a sure sign you have old leaks that are still current leaks. Mold takes a few days to a few weeks to start growing, so if you have visible mold, you probably have water damage that has been there a while.
  • Feel soft spots – If you touch the spot and it feels wet, then it’s likely a new leak. If you touch the drywall and it feels soft then the water has had enough time to soak in and impact the integrity of the material. It mean you still have an active leak that could have also been leaking for a long time.
  • You see wetness – If you see actual water and wetness, then it’s a very obvious sign that you have a fresh leak. If possible, try to see where the leak is coming from so you can treat it as soon as possible.

Now that you know how to tell if water damage is new or old, it will help you if you need to assess water damage in your own home. If you have water damage that is old there is a good chance your home insurance won’t cover it.

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