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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Water damage caused by animals

10/20/2021 (Permalink)

Blog Summary: The SERVPRO article explains how rodents and pests can infest the plumbing system and lead to pipe leaks, fire hazards, and infections in a home. It also urges homeowners to regularly inspect water sources for any leaks to avoid disasters. 

Water damage by animals

Water causes almost $7 billion of damage every few seconds in the country. The reasons can range from natural causes such as thunderstorms and hurricanes to sprinkler malfunction and sewage backups. SERVPRO, a water damage restoration company, discusses how pipe leaks and a pest infestation can cause severe water damage to property. 

Water Leak Facts

Here are some facts regarding water leaks that highlight the importance of inspecting and maintaining water sources that can become potential causes of water damage.

  • On an average, household leaks can waste more than 10,000 gallons of water every year.
  • Household leaks waste more than 1 trillion gallons annually nationwide. This quantity can be used by more than 11 million homes, annually.
  • Ten percent of homes have unsuspected leaks that waste 90 gallons or more per day.
  • Common types of leaks found in the home are worn toilet flappers, dripping faucets, and other leaking valves. 
  • Homeowners can save 10 percent of their water bill by fixing a leak in time. 
  • Regularly inspecting and maintaining dripping faucets, toilet flappers, and showerheads require much less investment than a water damage restoration. 

Water leaks caused by animals 

Rodents and pests often make their way into a home through the plumbing. What attracts them is a cozy place to live and an ample supply of food and water. A pipe leak left unaddressed can, for instance, attract an animal to seek residence. These animals often start residing in attics, between walls, in cabinets, and in crawl spaces. 

Once they have taken up residence in a property they start causing damage of various kinds from contamination to water leaks. 

Rodents and pests love chewing on plastic pipes made of PVC, CPVC, and PEX. Some rodents will even chew on galvanized steel pipes to file down their continually growing teeth. Sometimes, critters may occasionally visit when the temperatures are high and the rainfall is very low to nibble on the pipes. Some of the animals that may nibble the pipes are:

  • Mice and rats
  • Squirrels 
  • Opossums
  • Raccoons
  • Chipmunks
  • Skunks
  • Dogs

The water damage caused by leaking pipes can escalate into major losses for the property owners. In case of a suspected water leak, property owners must contact a water damage restoration company like SERVPRO to inspect the possible source of the water leak. An experienced eye can determine if the cause of the water leak is due to gnawing by rodents and pests, and take measures accordingly. They may choose to replace parts of the chewed pipe or make extensive repairs.

Another consequence of the resident rodents and pests can be fire hazards. These animals may end up gnawing on not just water pipes but also electrical wires. The soft, plastic coating on electrical wires is easy on their gums, while the metal wire inside the insulation helps in wearing down the teeth. These gnawed wires can, however, lead to structural fires.

If the infestation by animals has been detected, there is a possibility of water leakage, structural fires, as well as infections. Homeowners must contact a professional water damage restoration service and plumbing services to address the issue. 


  • SERVPRO uses state-of-the-art equipment to bring the damaged property back to its original state. SERVPRO of Grapevine/NE Tarrant County is constantly updating its fleet and equipment so clients in Southlake, Grapevine, Keller, or surrounding areas can quickly access the services. 
  • With over 1,700 US and Canadian Franchise locations, SERVPRO is strategically positioned to respond faster to an emergency of any magnitude.
  • The SERVPRO staff is highly trained in property damage restoration. They receive initial in-house training and constant skill up-gradation at the corporate training facility and also acquire the regular IICRC-industry certification.

For water damage restoration services, call SERVPRO of Grapevine/NE Tarrant County today at (817) 595-2506 or e-mail at office@SERVPROheb.com

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