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Preventing Water Damage & Mold Growth during a Family Vacation

Cinnaminson, NJ – WEBWIRE

July and August are two of the busiest months for family vacations.  These trips away from home provide people with the opportunity to get away and relax, but a few things can turn a dream vacation into a nightmare as quickly as coming back to a water-damaged home.

Water damage is one of the most common reasons for an insurance claim and when it occurs while no one is home, a small water damaging event can quickly escalate into major damage. While preventing a natural flood is out of most people’s hands, there are steps that can be taken to minimize the risk of most other water-damaging events from occurring during a trip away from home.

Tips for preventing water damage before leaving for vacation include:

  • Check the home for any existing leaks.
  • Consider shutting off the water main to the home.  If this cannot be done because of an automatic sprinkler system or other reasons, shut off the valves to major appliances within the home.
  • If the property has a well, consider shutting the pump off. 
  • Check gutters and downspouts for damage and any debris that may be causing obstructions.
  • If the property has a sump pump, be sure it is in working order.
  • When traveling during freezing weather, be sure the home’s heating system is operating properly and that any exposed pipes are insulated.  It is also a good idea to drain pipes if the water has been shut off by running water faucets and flushing the toilets.
  • Ask a family member or friend to periodically check on the home and be sure they know where the water main shut off valve is located.

“If water damage has occurred, it is important to understand that the introduction of water or elevated humidity levels can cause the growth of mold in as short as 1 to 2 days on many building materials, furnishings and belongings,” said Joe Frasca, Senior Vice President of Marketing at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Water damage caused by a sanitary sewer overflow or as the result of outdoor flooding may contain everything from mold and bacteria to viruses and chemical contaminants. EMSL offers test kits and laboratory testing services to identify potential hazards that may be in a home following any type of water incursion.”

EMSL recently sponsored an educational video about things people can do to help prevent water damage in their home while they are away. It can be seen at:

To learn more about testing a water-damaged property for mold or other environmental, health and safety issues, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email .

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, indoor air quality and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public.  The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.

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