How can homeowners in Wichita, Kansas, keep their foundations happy so that it keeps everyone safe for years to come?
The foundation of the home. It’s the base of everything holding the house together. Without it, everything could literally fall apart. So they’re built to last! But how can homeowners in Wichita, Kansas, keep their foundations happy so that it keeps everyone safe for years to come? Following are some easy tips for homeowners to keep their properties safe and well-maintained for a long time to come.
Landscaping and drainage
When groundwater or rainwater collects along the foundation wall or beneath the floor or slab, it can lead to mold growth, wall failure and other serious moisture problems. Landscaping in Wichita, Kansas, should send drainage away from the foundation; if the ground has settled or slopes toward the foundation, add dirt or re-grade to ensure that water drains away from foundation walls. In addition:
- Don’t pile new dirt closer than 6” to the bottom of siding.
- Make sure gutters slope away from the house.
- If downspouts discharge near the house, connect them to a gutter drainpipe that will discharge to a daylight opening at least 5 feet from the foundation wall.
Regular driveway maintenance will help prevent rainwater from seeping into the ground beneath the driveway and toward the house. Some driveways in Wichita, Kansas, require regular resealing to prevent cracking and sinking. If the driveway channels water toward the house, re-grade or alter drainage to carry the water away from the foundation.
Gutters and Downspouts
Clogged gutters can force rainwater up onto the roof under shingles – or cause it to overflow and travel down the inside of the wall or collect at the foundation. They can also lead to severe problems like rainstorm overflows and winter ice buildup. Most gutter checks in Wichita, Kansas, should be conducted from the safety of a ladder on the ground.
If the shingle drip edge (the metal strip under the first course of shingles above the gutter) is damaged or missing – or if the shingle edges have cracked and fallen into the gutter – the edge needs prompt repair. If you see excessive amounts of shingle grit or granules in the gutters, that’s a sign of shingle aging; it may impede water flow. Hose or sweep it out. If your gutters frequently fill with leaves and twigs, consider purchasing gutter shields that allow water in while keeping leaves and debris out. If there is standing water in the gutters, adjust the slope to ensure proper drainage. Gutter overflow may be caused by:
- An insufficient number of gutters
- Undersized gutters
- Second floor gutters that flow into first floor gutters
Most people in Wichita, Kansas, clean their gutters in the fall. You may need to do it more frequently, especially if the debris that collects is dirt-like and decomposing.
Walk around the perimeter of your house during heavy rains to check the performance of gutters, downspouts and drainage systems. Downspouts that don’t empty far enough away from foundation walls can lead to foundation wall damage and a wet basement. To protect foundation walls in a downspout-related water emergency, use lengths of inexpensive, flexible plastic downspout extensions to direct the water toward lower ground, far away from the house.
Crawlspaces in Wichita, Kansas, are a prime location for unwanted moisture and mold growth. All crawlspaces should have plastic groundcover that counteracts ground moisture to prevent mold growth and structural damage. If exterior grading slopes toward foundation walls, make immediate grade corrections. Check all penetrations and HVAC ductwork for the same problems described above.
FreshCo can help with all these issues and more. It is always better to prevent a problem than to have to hire us for damage that has already occurred. Give us a call today and see how we can help keep your home safe!
“Inspector were very respectful and we’re well educated and showed real genuine concern for me and my family”
— Georgia H. in Wichita, Kansas