It is cheaper to prevent water damage by performing simple maintenance tasks than paying for repairs.
Water damage can cause major structural damage by affecting at the core strength of your house and it is the #1 culprit that weakens home foundation. Just think about it – damp wood is weak, it is easier for termites and carpenter ants to attack it and it also causes mold and mildew.
Here are 5 easy maintenance things to do to that will give you piece of mind.
1. Clean out roof gutters
Take a safe climb up to your roof and check out your gutters. It is not a good sign if you’re seeing lots of leaves, birds’ nests, sticks up there. And on a rainy day, a clogged gutter can send water spilling into your home’s foundation, through the roof, or down to your basement. That could cause some serious water damage! Remember, if your gutters are too high, be safe and get a professional to check them.
2. Keep good drainage
Poor drainage weakens your foundation, causing cracks, uneven settling, and pathways for water to enter your home. Ensure your downspouts direct water 5 to 10 feet away from your house.
Also, make sure your yard is sloped at least 6 inches over a 10-foot span away from your foundation. That slope keeps water from getting down right next to your foundation, where it could cause walls to lean, crack the masonry, and create leaks. For crawl spaces, keeping water away makes sure excess water doesn’t pool underneath your floor, making for damp conditions that encourage mold, rot, and insects.
3. Check for water leaks
Persistent leaks lead to mold and mildew, rot, and even termites and carpenter ants. Though, if you fix a leak soon after it starts, there may be no long-term damage at all.
Check for leaks by looking for dark spots under pipes inside sink cabinets, stains on ceilings, toilets that rock, and of course drips. At least once a year, inspect your roof. Repair missing, loose, and damaged shingles. Repair any cracked caulking and check for leaks around flashing.
4. Use a drain snake instead of unclogging chemicals
No matter how clean you are – clogs are going to happen. As convenient as they may be, powerful chemical eat away at the pipes. Do not use them to get things moving again. Owning a drain snake is a good solution to clear away clogs. They’re pretty inexpensive, you can get them at your local hardware store, and they can cut through most any clog you’ll have without damaging pipes.
5. Be careful where you plant
Some plants and trees, like weeping willows, have pretty invasive roots. If you’re not careful, they’ll grow right into your sprinkler system, drainage field, pipes, and septic tanks. Plan before you plant to keep roots away from any water lines.