Loss Prevention Philosophy
The goal of loss prevention is to minimize risk and financial loss for our policyholders. By identifying serious hazards and providing professional risk management advice, we can help protect your assets while enhancing and promoting safety.
Loss Prevention Inspection and Assessment
In coordination with insureds and their broker, our team of trained inspectors can plan to visit your property to check the condition of major structures, heating, electrical and drainage systems, etc.
Watch our YouTube Home Inspection Video to see what we look for and what to expect from the process.
Common Causes of Loss or Damage
Let us share our expertise to help you avoid common causes of loss or damage:
Sump Pumps, Sewers, Septic Systems & Home Drains
|Normally every home should have a sump pump in its basement to get rid of excess water.||If you don't have one it would be a good investment to protect your valuable belongings.|
|It's recommended you have a professionally installed high volume sump pump capable of pumping a minimum of 2200 gallons per hour.||Test your sump pump monthly by pouring water into the sump drain until it's activated. Listen for strange noises coming from motor, oil on the water, if you hear or see this call your plumber.|
|Does your sump pump have a battery backup system in the event of a power interruption?||Test battery backup monthly replace battery at least every 3 years.|
|Make sure your sump pump discharge plumbing is hard PVC piping with minimum pipe size of 1 1/2'' leaving the dwelling with the installation of a check valve.||Inspect discharge plumbing annually for blockages. You may want to consider installing a discharge anti-freeze device.|
|Your sump pump discharge hose should carry the water 20' or more away from dwelling foundation.||Inspect entire sump pump discharge plumbing annually for blockages.|
|Sump pump discharge piping must have minimum 1/4'' to 1/2''slope when leaving dwelling to avoid freeze up||Inspect and test in the fall to make sure your entire exterior piping is draining completely to avoid freeze ups|
|When using a check valve make sure a 1/8" hole is drilled in the PVC pipe just after the sump pump above the water line||This is done to help eliminate your sump pump from having an air lock. Inspect monthly and make sure this hole is not blocked|
|Check the size of your sump hole, the common sump pit hole is normally 18" wide by 2" deep.||Having anything smaller can cause your sump pump to short cycle and reduce its life span|
|Have a surge protection device between sump pump equipment and power supply.||Since you are relying on this equipment to work when you most need it, it is advisable to have surge protection in place. Inspect and test annually.|
|Do you have a backup generator capable of running all your most critical appliances including your sump pump in the event of a sustained power interruption?||A backup generator is a valuable piece of equipment and should be hard wired professionally to feed back through your panel to run all your most critical appliances in the event of a power failure. We recommend you test this equipment 4 times a year.|
|Always have a secondary sump pump or sump buddy available for back up protection.||Having back up equipment provides you with peace of mind and can eliminate or reduce major damage from occurring|
|If you're home is connected to a sewer system make sure you have a back water valve installed outside your home on the main sewer line.||A back water valve is an important piece of equipment. After heavy rains this valve will help stop water and sewage from entering your home.|
|Always inspect your street storm drains.||In the fall you should take the time to inspect and remove leaves and debris covering grates.|
|Large tree roots can plug your perimeter drains and main sewer lines.||It's nice to have large trees on your property. However the roots from trees can cause serious damage to your drains and sewer lines. Keep trees at least 75' away from your drains and sewer lines.|
|If you have a septic system you own your own sewer system. This system treats your sewage right in your own yard and releases treated effluent back into the ground which eventually filtrates back into the ground water.||It is important that you inspect your system annually by looking for soft spots in the septic bed of your lawn. It is also important that you have your septic holding tank professionally pumped out every 3-5 years to remove the sludge at the bottom of the tank. This will avoid system backup.|
|Large trees near your septic bed or driving/parking vehicles on it will cause damage or plug septic tiles.||Once again tree roots are attracted to septic systems and can cause serious damage so keep trees 75' or more. This will eliminate costly repair and sewage backup.|
|Home Drains - Interior|
|Basement floor drains.||Always keep drains clear of obstructions and have a backflow valve installed on the main drain leaving the dwelling.|
|Inside Your Home|
|Pipes, Plumbing and Home Appliances|
|Washing machine.||Check rubber hoses annually for deterioration and replace every 5 years. The new braided hoses are more durable however they should be replaced every 15 years.|
|Dishwasher supply and discharge hose.+||Check every 6 months if plastic or rubber becomes hard and brittle replace before cracking occurs.|
|Sink supply lines.||Check yearly and replace if corroded.|
|Toilet supply lines.||Check yearly and replace metal lines with new braided flexible rubber lines.|
|Washing machine discharge hose.||Check yearly and replace if plastic or rubber is cracked.|
|Refrigerator ice maker tubing.||Inspect every 6 months and if the line is plastic replace it with flexible copper line which is more durable.|
|Raise basement appliances.||For additional protection/prevention raise all major basement appliances furnaces, hot water heaters etc 6" to 8" off basement floor.|
|Furnace and air conditioning condensation drains.||Inspect and clean condensation drains and pumps yearly.|
|Water heater.||Your water heater should be replaced every 10 to 15 years to maximize efficiency and avoid leaks. Inspect and check unit for leaks.|
|Main water supply shut off valve.||Your main shut off valve should be clearly marked and easily accessible in the case of an emergency.|
|Outside Your Home|
|Walls, Doors and Windows|
|Roof||Always check your roof annually for signs of deterioration, are your shingles beginning to curl or separate? If so your roof requires replacement. The useful life of shingles is 20 years.|
|Doors and windows and flashings.||Check annually and replace damaged weather stripping, flashing and re-caulk if necessary.|
|Basement wall/Foundation Inspection.||Is your foundation in good condition? Inspect foundation walls yearly for cracks and have them professionally repaired to avoid water entering the basement.|
|Exterior siding.||Annually inspect your exterior siding and vapor for cracks or separation which could allow water infiltration and repair immediately.|
|Eaves troughs down spouts runoff extensions.||Should extend at least a minimum of 6' away from dwelling foundation to divert water from collecting around your foundation.|
|Eaves troughs and downspouts.||Should always be cleaned in the spring and fall removing leaves and debris.|
|Basement window well covers and drains.||Inspect in the spring and fall for cracks, clean and remove all debris.|
|Exterior Grounds and Water Supply|
|Landscape drainage: Has the grade around your house settled?||It is very important that the land around your home slopes away from the foundation allowing water to flow freely away from foundation to eliminate basement flooding.|
|Outside water faucet freeze proof.||During winter months outside water faucets should be shut off from the inside and hoses removed to prevent freeze up.|
|Sprinklers.||Inspect and assure they are always directed away from home.|
Oil Heating Systems (Video)
Oil Tanks - An Inside Look (Video)
Wood Stove Safety Tips (Video)
Farm and Commercial Inspections
In addition to being professionally certified in a number of disciplines, our Risk Assessment Specialists are trained to handle the special needs of farm and commercial risks.
When conducting farm inspections, we are aware of livestock owners' concerns regarding the spread of disease. Our farm inspectors follow strict biosecurity protocol throughout the entire inspection process to limit the risk of contamination on and between farms. By working together to address the needs of each farmer, our loss prevention inspector can ensure a convenient, safe and productive visit.
Thermography - the most advanced tool in loss prevention.
North Waterloo is at the forefront of loss prevention with the use of thermographic cameras. With this technology, we can take an infrared photograph of your electrical panel, machinery, or any object. The image will show temperature variations that allow our certified inspectors to identify abnormalities or imminent hazards that could otherwise go undetected and result in a loss.
Fire Extinguisher Program
Many property losses are the result of fire, and oftentimes the severity of the damage can be greatly reduced by quick action with a fire extinguisher.
To encourage this loss prevention effort, North Waterloo will reimburse policyholders a portion of the purchase price of a fire extinguisher and will cover the cost for recharging.
A North Waterloo policyholder can purchase an ABC fire extinguisher from the retailer of their choice and submit a copy of the invoice marked "paid" along with the insured's policy number to our Claims Department at Head Office.
A rebate is given according to the size of the fire extinguisher purchased*:
Fire Extinguisher Re-Charging
North Waterloo will reimburse policyholders for the costs associated with the actual recharging of their ABC fire extinguisher including dry chemical refill and hydrostatic testing*. To receive reimbursement, a policyholder must submit a copy of the invoice marked "paid" along with their policy number to the North Waterloo Claims Department at Head Office.
* Subject to a maximum of $150 on residential policies.