Dishwashers can cause significant water damage if not maintained properly. Learn how to keep your dishwasher from causing significant water damage in your home.
Most homeowners in Michigan have dishwashers. They make our lives more convenient and allow us to spend less time scrubbing and more time enjoying our homes. However, a dishwasher can cause a lot of water damage to your home if they aren’t properly maintained. Let’s explore how you can not only prevent significant water damage from your dishwasher, but also expand its life.
Certain Things Should Never Be Washed In Your Dishwasher
There are many items that are marked “dishwasher safe”. These are items that should go in your dishwasher. However, there are many items that people routinely put in their dishwasher that they should not. Aside from ruining the item placed in the dishwasher, many of the items can also do damage to the appliance itself.
Homes & Gardens recently put together this list, with input from Aladdin’s president Tim Jankowski about the things you shouldn’t put in your dishwasher. Many of these items might seem like no-brainers, but many of them are items most don’t even think twice about washing in their dishwasher.
Damage from some of these items can clog the filter or drainage system, causing your dishwasher to overflow. It can also burst pipes in your home’s plumbing system. Be sure to never put the items on the list in your dishwasher.
Be Sure To Follow Proper Dishwasher Maintenance
Much like your car, a dishwasher needs maintenance to operate at an optimal level. There are several things you should be doing to ensure your dishwasher does not cause water damage to the rest of your home. These include:
- Cleaning your filter: If your dishwasher has a filter, be sure to clean the grime and residue from it at least bi-monthly. If it needs to be replaced, be sure to order the proper part from the manufacturer.
- Clean the Door & Seal: You may not be aware of this, but dishwashers have seals. Be sure to clean it regularly, as a seal can easily become damaged, causing water to leak out.
- Clean the Spray Arm: The spray arm is usually detachable for easy cleaning. The blockage on a spray arm can lead to a broken hose or pipe, so be sure to clean it out.
- Run Your Dishwasher: We know water bills can get out of control, but be sure to run the dishwasher at least once a week. Dishwashers can do a lot of the cleaning just by using them.
Proper maintenance can go a long way to ensuring your dishwasher lasts longer and doesn’t break down causing you damage and costing you money.
What To Do If Your Dishwasher Creates Water Damage
Even with all of the right maintenance, a dishwasher can leak. A hose can break. These things happen. There are important things to do (and not do) in order to minimize the water damage caused by a leaking dishwasher.
Before you begin cleaning, look around. Be sure water hasn’t caused any damage to electrical appliances or is in an area where it could cause a hazard to you or your family. If you are unsure, shut off power to your kitchen or any affected areas.
Be sure to check under and around in nooks and crannies. You’ll want to make sure the damage isn’t impacting the subfloor, which could cause you to fall through to the floor below.
Inspect Your Home Thoroughly
Even if you have mopped up all visible water, that doesn’t mean that water has not leaked through to your subfloor, basement, or through walls. You will want to completely inspect your home before you consider the job done. Damage to the subfloor can spread causing your entire kitchen floor to be damaged.
Check Your Insurance Policy
While homeowners insurance should cover the cost of damage to the floor and surrounding items, the dishwasher itself is most likely not going to be covered. Adjusters will come to help file your claim, and as long as it is determined that there was a mechanical failure of the dishwasher, you should be fine. But if you have been stuffing items in the dishwasher that don’t belong, you may have to cover the cost out of pocket.