Spring has arrived and in order to keep your home well maintained and working, just like your car, you need to inspect it and do some maintenance. If you neglect to inspect and repair your home possible expensive repair can arise in the future.
Here are some items you should inspect:
- Your roof – Is there anything out of place or missing? With binoculars or even a sharp eye, check for cracked or missing shingles. If you have roof turbines, they should be spinning. Roof vents should all look the same. If there are any that look different, it could be because they have been lifted by a critter or Mother Nature. Look for nail-pops. This is when nails push the tabs of the shingles up, allowing water to get in where the nails are coming up. All of these are easy fixes by a handy man or a professional. Don’t do anything, and you can be looking at some expensive repairs in the future!
- Chimneys – If you have a masonry chimney look at the very top. Are pieces of bricks missing or cracked? Is there a white calcium-like deposit called efflorescence? All of these are indication that water is entering behind the brick work. Fix it now and it can be inexpensive, but wait a couple of winters and you are looking at major expense.
- Exterior walls- Walk around the house. Whether you have brick, stucco, or siding, look for discoloured spots. Look mostly under eves, near gutter downspouts, under window sills. Spots around eves and down spouts usually means that the eve and gutter system is failing. This could be because too much debris has accumulated in the gutters and they need to be cleaned. They could be old and leaking. Or the weight of ice and snow may have made them unbalanced causing the need for repair or replacement. Water stain under the window sill means your sill is allowing water to penetrate behind your wall surface, or is not shedding water properly. This can be easily fixed with caulking. Bricks placed sideways to create a sill have a lot of mortar exposed. If the mortar is deteriorated you will need to repair it. In some cases, it can be easier to replace the brick sill with a natural stone.
- Foundation – Walk around your foundation wall, check for cracks. Minor cracks and surface cracks usually don’t pose any concern, especially if your home has a plastic membrane around your foundation walls. If you notice a crack, it’s a good idea to go to that part of basement and check the walls and the floors for moisture or stains. Check around the foundation wall for areas that have sunk. Remember the best way to keep water away from your foundation wall and basement is with a proper slope away from your house. Those cement concreate splash blocks at the bottom of your down spout were placed there to move water away from your foundation wall. Make sure that, due to ground settlement they are not allowing water to go against the foundation wall. Easy fix would be to add some crushed stone underneath in the back side, so that discharged water from the down spout flows correctly. Check your window wells, they should be clean of debris. Most window wells have drains that can carry water from the well to the drainage tile system and to the storm sewers. Debris will clog the flow of water, which alternately can end up in your basement through your window.
- Windows- A tight seal around your windows is required to avoid water or air penetration. Check caulking and weather stripping to ensure it is intact.
- Decks and patio- At a glance ensure the surface of your deck/patio is slightly sloped away from your home and intact. Check for loose deck boards or weak deck boards that should be replaced.
To make sure that you stay on top of things, it is important that you record all potential issues and address them. Follow up with a professional if the repair is outside of your skill set.
Road to Home Inspection is a CENTURY 21 Leading Edge Realty preferred partner that can help you with home maintenance and inspections. Contact Dino Biondo at www.road2home.ca.