The first tropical system recently made its way into the Gulf of Mexico. While it created plenty of wind and rain for our neighbors to the west in Texas, it is also a great reminder to us in south Louisiana to make sure our homes are ready for hurricane season. Of course stocking the pantry, testing the generator and checking flashlights are all important, but hours and days of rain can take quite a toll on your home’s foundation as well. Here are a few tips to make sure your foundation is protected.
- Check for standing water: The soil that our homes are built on pose a serious threat to our homes. It is full of clay and expands with moisture. Anywhere you see pooling water is a place where soil can swell and create pressure against your foundation. If you have any troublesome pools near your home, you may want to check for other signs of foundation damage if they have been there for a while.
- Check for dry areas: In the same sense, during a dry spell the soil that supports the foundation can shrink and retract. So while we don’t want too much water, keeping equilibrium is very important. Watering dry spots in between rain spells can prevent huge swells when the next shower comes through.
- Clean gutters: The way water is channeled away from your home is crucial. The points made above can all be mitigated with clean gutters. Gutters that are clogged with leaves, sticks and other debris will force water to spill over, consequently landing and collecting directly next to the foundation. This constant precipitation can wash away valuable soil as well as force it to expand and create pressure.
- Check downspouts: Clean gutters can only be as effective as your downspouts. While the gutters collect rain water, the downspouts channel it away from the vulnerable areas of your home. It is important to make sure these spouts are clear and strategically placed. If you notice water ponding at the end of a downspout it may be time to extend or move them.
While it is important that you consider all of these tips year round, the wet climate that Louisiana summers and subsequent tropical systems bring make them all the more crucial. This is also a good time of the year to take inventory of the common signs of foundation distress.
- Slanted floors
- Sticking doors and windows
- Cracks in bricks
- Cracks in concrete
- Windows and doors that won’t stay closed
These are only a handful of the signs of foundation damage. A complete list can be found here. If you have noticed any of these now is the time to have your foundation looked at and get an estimate from a local, trusted foundation repair company that understands our area’s unique conditions. If these problems exist now, a tropical storm or hurricane could only exaggerate them, making for a more costly repair.
For over 30 years, WCK Foundation Repair has been helping the homeowners of south Louisiana restore the safety and value of their homes. With the only proven method for homes on the North Shore, WCK’s drilled pier is ideal for the soil along the I-12 corridor. Foundation repair companies in the New Orleans area are specialized for that unique soil, which is drastically different from the Covington area. With a fully-transferrable lifetime warranty, WCK stands behind their work and is focused on supporting the community. For more information, click here.