Drainage issues can spell big trouble for homeowners. Keeping an eye on any possible drainage problems can help keep your home in tip-top shape.
Drainage problems can creep up on you and wreak havoc on your home if left untreated. By being aware of the warning signs, you can make sure to help keep your house in premier shape and possibly avoid costly repairs from water damage caused by poor drainage.
Starting at the bottom of your home, if you spot cracks in your foundation, try to keep an eye on them and see if they get any larger or wider. It is usually normal for a foundation to have a few small cracks, but if you notice fissures starting to increase in size and width, you've likely got a drainage issue you'll need to solve.
Water stains, whether on the walls or floor of your basement, usually indicate there is a problem. When water evaporates off of outer foundation walls, it can leave a crusty white line from mineral deposits. You may need to simply clean out your gutters and make sure that your downspouts aren't pouring rainwater right next to your foundation. But if pieces of the wall are flaking off in big sheets, water may have seeped into the stonework. This could be a sign of a serious drainage issue that can be a threat to the solidity of your home's foundation. Water stains on the floor of the basement can mean that water is somehow getting in and evaporating in your home, either from cracks in the foundation, the joint of the basement floor and wall, or through window wells.
Working up to the top floor of your house, check for mildew in the attic. That might seem like the last place to look if you're concerned about a drainage issue, but moisture from inside the house or your crawl space can work its way up and create mildew in your attic. Left untreated, this mildew can ruin roof sheathing and shingles.
Looking outside your home, if there are puddles on your lawn or soil all over sidewalks and driveways after a storm, it could be a sign of a drainage problem. Persistent puddles on your lawn that don't evaporate within a few hours can ruin plants, cause root rot, and contribute to an unpleasant, soggy yard. This standing water can alsoruin foundations and create mildew. Dirt that is washed out of your garden beds after a rainstorm may mean that the water is flowing in the wrong direction, taking your soil and plants with it. You may need to evaluate the slope of your lawn or work on building better garden beds to contain your soil and plants.
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