Why you should stop putting off home repairs.
Future home repair problems could be brewing behind the walls, under the floors, in the crawlspaces and just under the roof.
Take care of the items that are either preventable or repairable before they become much bigger problems. Corrective action now could save you big dollars in the long run if you consider what lies beneath the surfaces of your home.
Be a healthy skeptic about the little things!
Examples of home repairs to look for and how to prevent them.
Take a look around your home with fresh eyes and see how many of these little problems you can spot!
- Is the caulk around your wet areas in the bath and the kitchen peeling away? If so, water is likely getting behind the backsplash, under the shower pan, and in other areas where there’s a gap. Water is the number one culprit for major problems, including rotted wood, damaged drywall and studs behind the walls and of course the dreaded mold.
- Are you seeing water spotting on the plywood (or drywall) under the roof? If so, water may be entering around the vents. As your roof boots rot over time, they allow water to enter through the gaps that they were once protecting. Or, entering under a shingle.
- Are your downspouts pointed toward the house? If so, water is likely eroding the soil around the area and the runoff is headed toward your foundation, instead of away from the foundation. This will cause foundation settling, water seepage into your crawlspace or basement and is an invitation for mold growth.
- Is your dryer vent missing some louvers? If so, you’re at risk for birds, rodents or insects entering the venting. This is an easy fix with a new vent or better yet, a vent with a cage.
- Is your siding puffy or rotting? If so, this is a sign that your home is vulnerable to the environment or insects or birds. We’ve seen damage from birds and squirrels getting inside the home through damaged siding or window trims and don’t wish this on anyone!
- Are you gutters full debris? If you haven’t cleaned out your gutters in a while and you’re seeing overflow when it rains, it’s likely causing damage to the fascia or soffits along the roof line. What you can’t see should be cause for immediate action. Leaves backing up into the corners allow water to build up which of course causes the wood behind the gutter to rot. Usually, it’s undetected until the damage is seen inside the attic and on the ceiling drywall or maybe the gutter is detaching from the house. At that point, it’s a much bigger problem.
- Do you feel a soft spot around your toilet? This is usually a sign that water is leaking from the drain flange or possibly the supply lines. Address this early when the subfloor can be patched versus having to replace a larger portion of the subfloor later.
- Are the tiles falling off your shower walls? If so, water has probably been getting behind the tiles over time, creating soft walls and maybe mold growth. The repair is likely not just re-adhering the tile but instead removing the tile and addressing the board that lies just behind before the water seeps behind to rot the studs.
- Are your washer hoses drying out, splitting, or dripping? If so, it’s time to replace asap with steel reinforced hoses before they spring a leak and cause serious damage!
Little problems usually lead to big problems!
Take for example the recent case of a homeowner who didn’t get around to caulking her shower pan. When she started seeing mold she used bleach to clean the shower. When the mold kept coming back, she kept treating it with bleach until finally, she felt her shower pan rocking a bit in the back. The shower pan was rocking because the subfloor was rotting underneath and in fact, the entire back corner was missing! Needless to say, she’s the proud owner of a brand new shower. And she learned the value of caulking.
Another homeowner noticed that there was water stains on the walls in his bonus room over the garage. When he finally got around to addressing what he thought was a minor issue, it turned out to be a blocked corner gutter. This homeowner had a firm clean his gutters for a cheap price and he got what he paid for which was a not so thorough job and a huge backflow of debris, which caused water intrusion. He also got new drywall, new subfloor, new carpeting, and a new paint job in his man cave! (He no longer uses the same gutter cleaning company.)
One of our customers noticed that her tiled kitchen floor was cracking lengthwise from front to back. After having a contractor repair the grout several times, she realized that it wasn’t a tile or grout issue but a bigger subfloor problem. We installed several new joists in her crawl space to support the floor and the reoccurring problem disappeared.
The moral of these stories is, of course, is deferred maintenance leads to larger and more costly issues!
Half Day, Full Day or More?
Handyman Matters is proud to be your first choice for home repairs, home improvements or home renovations! We offer half day or full day packages so that you can take care of the basic maintenance before it becomes a larger problem. All we ask is that you create a list and our skilled craftsmen will take care of the rest! It’s as easy as calling our friendly office team and scheduling an appointment. Of course, it’s much less painful than going to the dentist – you can sit and have a cup of coffee while our background screened and grandma approved craftsmen do the work for you!