Water sensors. Pretty amazing, I bought a couple of them and here’s my take on it.

So if you're like me I don't go down to the basement very often and let alone the mechanical room. So.... the reason for my post, and this happened to me last summer, the water heater was leaking and I didn't notice it for a couple of days. Good news there was very little damage and I also have an industrial dehumidifier so not a big deal in my world, but........those of you with finished basements and you don't happen to have an industrial dehumidifier laying around a water problem can cost thousands to repair.

I purchased 2 water sensors and tried them out.
First one

I bought these I think for 20 bucks. When they get wet they sound an alarm. I could barely hear it on the first floor of my home. Plus it's also a one time use. They run on batteries and not sure how you would ever know if the battery was dead or not.

Second one

I was very impressed with this unit, as soon as water hits the 2 sensors on the probe an alarm goes off and I could hear it on the first and second floor of my home.
But the best part is you download the app to your phone and it sends a notification. You can be anywhere on the plant and know if there's a water issue in your home.
The unit runs on batteries so if the power goes out it will still work, well the alarm part will but your wifi is probably down. It will also send a message when the batteries are low. Nice!

This is a great tool for landlords, we just finished a job this week where the tenant didn't notice the water heater leaking and we had to remediate the mechanical room.......so for the 100 bucks (2 per Pack) this thing will tell you if there is a leak in seconds. It really is that fast.

In summary

Having a water sensor that has an app that will notify you is key, over the years of doing remeditation the costs can really add up due to a small leak that went undetected.....So give yourself some peace of mind and get yourself one or two. I'm sure there are many other brands that may be better so please add some comments to this post.

Best places to put them.

Sump pumps fail,
Hang the probe inside the sump pit just a few inches below the floor, if the pump fails you will know before the water breaches the sump pit.

Cracks in foundations,
Take a walk around your home and see if there are any cracks in the foundation, they are typically at the window wells or where a support beam rests on the foundation. If you have a finished basement place the probe under the baseboard where the crack was located on the exterior. If you have carpet this will be a great early indicator if there is a leak.

Sewage back up.
Most homes don't have a sewage backflow preventer installed as shown below.

You would see it near the front of your home....so in the event of a city sewage backup it would most likely come up through your basement floor drain. Yes that's right, it's sewage from your neighbors so catching it early is a really good thing. Place the probe an inch or so inside the floor drain.

High efficiency furnaces.
Did you know that high efficiency furnaces create condensation? For example, a 100,000 btu furnace will create 1 gallon of water per hour when heating the home......WOW....  So this is a great place to put a sensor. Most homes have about a 50,000 btu furnace but that's still a half a gallon an hour. This can really damage your furnace, we see it often during home inspections. Place it in the bottom of the furnace by the blower fan or on the floor by the furnace.

I hope this helps.

Rick Clayton

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