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What to do in case of water infiltrations?

It is not always obvious what to do in case of water infiltrations, especially when they occur in a condominium. Within apartment blocks, water infiltrations and the damage they cause often give rise to conflicts, because it is not always easy to identify the responsibilities and implement the consequent actions to repair the damage and possibly obtain compensation.

Water infiltrations occur when the liquid passes through a solid surface. In houses, water often infiltrates walls, partitions or floors, causing even serious damages. The causes can be different, for example a continuous dripping, or humidity, or spilling of liquids that remain stagnant.

Water infiltrations must absolutely not be underestimated and neglected.

They could compromise the perimeter and partition walls, until plaster detaching.

Stains and molds or, in the worst case, drips appear, also damaging fixtures and furnishings.

Contact a technician

How to behave in case of water infiltration, when it is necessary to contact a technician?

If water infiltrations occur inside apartment buildings, it is necessary to notify the condominium administrator, who should have a list of trusted technicians, generally approved by the assembly of condominiums, to face all problems.

In any case, it is advisable to contact specialized technicians who can quickly carry out an inspection, assess the situation and propose an intervention plan.

Experience is very important, but that’s not all: the technician must also have tools that allow him to verify the hypotheses made at first sight.

The speed of intervention is crucial to avoid the aggravation of any damage.

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Establish the extent of the damage

To locate water infiltrations and establish the extent of the damage, thermography and video inspection tools can be useful.

The first is very important during the inspection phase, to find traces of water infiltrations without breaking anything. This is particularly appropriate when the area to be analyzed is very large.

With an infrared camera it is possible to detect the surface temperature and the presence of humidity. In fact, in case of water infiltration, the thermal resistance of the wall is reduced, helping to understand the location of water and humidity.

The video inspection must be carried out later, using a digital camera that explores the internal state of the pipes to ascertain the type of problem (for example structural failure or obstructions).

After this investigation, the technician will be able to evaluate the type of intervention required, indicating methods, time and probable costs.

How to determine who pays

How to determine who pays for the damage caused by water infiltration in an apartment building can be a complex and conflicting operation.

Fortunately, there is a reference legislation: Article 2051 of the Italian Civil Code establishes that “everyone is responsible for the damage caused by the things he hands, unless he proves unforeseeable circumstances”.

It means that if the breakage occurs inside the apartment causing infiltration into the one below, the owner has to pay the costs of restoring the area compromised by the infiltration.

Instead, when the infiltration is from the condominium, the costs have to be covered by the insurance. If this is missing or has expired, it is necessary to convene a condominium assembly so to decide on the approval and start of the work and establish the methods of compensation for damage.

In any case, the compensation must include everything that the owner of the damaged house must put in place to fully restore the situation.


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