Detecting Water Damage in Walls

Water damage can cause mold and mildew growth and compromise the structure of a home. Learn how to detect signs of water damage in walls such as wet spots, cracked paint bubbles, musty smells and more.

Detecting Water Damage in Walls

Water damage to walls and ceilings can be difficult to detect, but it's important to identify the signs of damage before it gets out of control. Peeling, bubbling, or deformed walls, mold or mildew growth, stains on the ceiling or walls, wet or damp stains on walls or walls, condensation on windows or walls, musty smells, water leaks, or dripping water are all signs of water damage. Drywall will show signs of water damage to the wall as it deforms, swells, or sags due to the weight of the water it absorbs. Walls or ceilings may swell and look puffy, or they may sag or collapse.

If you experience any of these signs of water damage, it's important to contact a professional such as Servpro Water Restoration to assess the situation and provide the necessary repairs. It's recommended that you call a licensed plumber or a trusted water damage restoration company to assess the damage and fix the problem before it gets out of control. Water damage is regrettable when it occurs in a home and it's often difficult to see what's causing the damage, or even to know if it's happening. However, there are signs that you can detect water damage to walls. These include wet or dark spots, cracked, bubbling, peeling, musty, mildew, or musty stains.

To begin with, one of the first noticeable signs of possible walls damaged by water is the peeling of paint and wallpaper. If the inside of a wall contains too much water, paint and wallpaper can lose their adhesion and start to peel off or form bubbles. Likewise, stains, discoloration (usually a yellow-brown color) and deformation can be important indicators of damage caused by underlying water in and around walls. Softened drywall is another sign of water damage to walls that is often overlooked.

If you suspect that there are water damaged walls in a particular area, be sure to press against those areas and see if the wall bends or sinks inward. It's important to remember that much of the damage is initially hidden, making it difficult to determine if the walls have been affected by water. Gutters should be kept clean so that water can flow through and down the downspouts and out into the yard. It's best to remove any damp insulation and allow the area to dry for 48 hours before placing new insulation and drywall.

It's also a good idea to check the rest of the house for other signs of water damage to identify which areas have been affected. Signs of water damage to walls can range from paint bubbles to deformed and sagging walls. In basements and areas with low airflow and poor lighting, one of the most obvious signs is the accumulation of water on the wall itself or on the floor just below. If your water bill has increased unexpectedly, it's useful to identify where the smell is coming from to detect signs of mold or water damage inside walls.

If you have darker colored walls or ceilings, you can check for water damage by looking for an area that may be deformed or sunken. Other signs that accompany hidden water damage may include mold growth, paint bubbles on walls, and wallpaper peeling. It's best to have an expert check your home if you suspect any kind of water damage.

Julianne Huval
Julianne Huval

Hardcore beer enthusiast. Freelance beer geek. Extreme social media aficionado. Avid music practitioner. Infuriatingly humble internet evangelist. Tea scholar.

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