Water damage can take a big bite out of the bottom line of condos and apartments. Huge repair costs, unhappy residents, and increasing insurance premiums create a nasty water damage trifecta.
If you want to protect your condo or apartment building from this axis of evil, you’ve got to learn the first rule (um, equation) of water damage:
TIME = DAMAGE
The longer a leak or flood goes unnoticed the worse the damage gets, at a near exponential rate.
While we can't predict the future, property managers and their teams now have access to another kind of superpower. You can use water sensors to detect water damage events the second they happen. You get instant alerts and can then fix the problem immediately, making both sides of the time = damage equation as small as possible.
But what kind of water sensor is best for your condo or apartment?
Here are 5 questions to consider when choosing a water sensor.
The best water sensors allow you to choose how you want to be alerted. Options such as flood phone calls, text messages, emails and instant notifications within the water sensor’s app make sure you’ll be alerted wherever you are. You should also be able to add the emails and phone numbers of other staff who need to be kept in the loop. Oh, and stay away from those sensors that only alert you with a loud noise. If no one's around to hear it, does it actually make a sound? Whoa, that's deep.
If you’re thinking about WiFi connected water sensors, consider this: each WiFi sensor needs to be paired to a WiFi network. Many condo and apartment residents have their own Internet connection. In a 100-unit building, that’s 100 (or more) separate connections – each one a potential point of failure. It’s much faster and easier to use sensors that connect to the Internet through a cellular connection. So fast, in fact, that cellular connected water sensors can be installed at a 100-unit building in less than a day! And there’s another advantage to that cellular connection....
If your sensor relies on WiFi it won’t work when the power goes out, but a cellular connected sensor will. And if you have to plug your water sensor into an electrical outlet, then you’re out of luck, too. Water sensors that run on batteries (or include a backup battery) will keep monitoring your entire building while the power is out. The sensor you choose should also send low battery notifications to keep your water damage detection system battery-death proof.
You might be tempted to hop on Amazon and pick up a water sensor for $10. Sounds like a bargain, right? That is, until you realize that these water sensors aren’t waterproof and are one-time use only. They break after they get wet or stop working quickly due to normal wear and tear. Often, as mentioned earlier, these sensors give noise alerts only so someone has to be home and within earshot to do anything about it. Better to get a waterproof sensor that you can reuse for years.
Water damage is only part of the water problems that apartments and condos face. Another big challenge is high water costs due to leaks. By combining different cellular connected water sensors for leaks and floods, you’ll be providing maximum protection against leaks and floods at your buildings.
Alert Labs makes easy-to-use leak and flood solutions for condos, apartments and pretty much any building that uses water. Explore our solutions for multifamily buildings.
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