Tuesday, September 16, 2014

10 Common Mistakes in Foundation Care and Maintenance.

10 COMMON MISTAKES IN FOUNDATION CARE AND MAINTENANCE

1. LACK OF MOISTURE CONTROL
Too little or too much water can cause soil expansion and contraction. Moisture should be maintained at consistent levels around your home’s perimeter during all seasons. When moisture differs around the foundation of the home shifting can happen causing foundation problems.

2. POOR RAIN AND RUN-OFF CONTROL
Gutters and downspouts on a structure can help control soil moisture levels and assist in a healthy foundation. Downspout extensions, splash blocks or underground piping also help direct rainwater away from your foundation. Lack of these items can lead to moisture imbalances and soil erosion.



3. IMPROPER DRAINAGE
Installing a drainage system alone isn’t enough to ensure adequate moisture protection for your foundation. A drainage system should slope away from your foundation at an angle of three inches for every five feet.

4. SPRINKLER SYSTEM WASTE
Using directional sprinkler heads on a conventional sprinkler system allows homeowners to point the flow of water toward the foundation. If a sprinkler with a hose is used, the type of sprinkler that drops water on the ground is preferred over one that sprays directly into the air saving water.

5. WIND RELATED WATER LOSS
Even a slight breeze can disperse water away from your foundation. If you have an automatic  sprinkler system make sure to change the timing if it is visibly windy.




6. WATERING WHEN THE SUN IS HIGH
The higher the temperature, the faster water evaporates. Since the barometer reaches such levels during the summer months in Texas, it is best to water when the temperature is as cool as possible, either early in the morning or late at night.

7. LANDSCAPE WATER CONSUMPTION
Few homeowners realize the damage that can happen to their foundation when the wrong plant is in the wrong place. A single oak tree can consume 100 gallons of water on a hot summer day. Plants and landscaping should be done keeping the foundation in mind.




8. PLACING SOAKER HOSES TOO CLOSE TO THE FOUNDATION.
It is best to install soaker hoses six inches away from the perimeter of your house and buried about three inches into the ground. Placing the hoses too close to the foundation can cause water to over saturate the soil under the foundation causing expansion of the soil and foundation.




9. THINKING RAIN CAN ALLEVIATE THE NEED FOR PROPER FOUNDATION MAINTENANCE
It is dry in Texas most of the year, so when it rains, parched soil expands. When the ground dries it
contracts. Rain can create damage to your foundation. Making sure to maintain moisture after a rain can help.

10. IGNORING EARLY WARNING SIGNS
Doors and windows that stick, or cracks in the floor, ceiling or walls can be early signs of shifting in the foundation. Having your foundation evaluated early can save money and further damage to your foundation.