Southern Florida homeowners, more than any in the country, know what damages water can do to a house. There are times when thunder storms, tornadoes, hurricanes, tropical storms, and rain by other names hit Southern Florida without reprieve. There’s no time for cleaning gutters in Miami while they’re being lashed with sheets of rain.
Homeowners cringe as they think of the damages this is doing to their houses. They look out the windows (which, by the way, are leaking,) and they can almost hear the foundation cracking. Homeowners cringe even more when they think of paying for huge damages. So what kind of damages are we talking about? Will gutter cleaning services prevent it?
Water Isn’t Always A Good Thing
Nothing will survive without water. Water is a life-giving substance to plants, animals, and humans. Too much of it, though, and you get floods, soil erosion, leaks in roofs, windows, and doors of a house.
Most homes’ drainage handles the usual rainfall plus a storm or two. When the water begins to puddle, though, it means the drainage system is overwhelmed. The water has nowhere to go, so the grass and other plants are drowned, and the soil is either washed away altogether or it’s degraded to the point it isn’t viable anymore.
When too much water hits the roof of a house, it pours down into the gutters. This leads the water to the down spouts, where it directs water away from the house and the foundation. But what happens when too much water overflow the gutters?
When a great deal of weight comes down onto something, it collapses. All those storms dumping water down Southern Florida roofs into their gutters weighs a ton. Add to the water the dirt and leaves blown by winds, and you have a serious problem.
Fascia boards and soffits are part of the roof where the gutters are located. Too much weight on the gutters will cause them to come off the house. There are times the fascia boards and soffits come off with the gutters.
This is bad for the house. Water now has an open invitation to damage the walls of the house. Mold is the bad guy, here, not to mention replacing the water damaged walls.
When torrential rains fill up a house’s gutters, the water backs up onto the roof. As the rain continues, the weight of the water gets heavier. The roof begins to leak.
A roof is supposed to last between 15 and 30 years. However, it’s only layers of wood, felt paper, and shingles. Continuous pelting by rain will weaken any roofing material except, perhaps, metal.
A total collapse of the roof doesn’t happen much, because homeowners call a roofer for help. Meanwhile, the buckets, pots, and any other vessel available are emptied when they fill. It’s time to clean gutters in Miami.
Overflowing gutters succumb to gravity, in that after the water does its thing inside the walls of the house, even more falling water affects the soil around the house. Soil is washed away, moving with the water to another spot on the property.
The pretty flowers and plants you worked so hard on are no longer an eye-catching statement about you and your house. They and the grass and even the roots of some trees are drowned, their plants and trees drooping or dead. There is nothing for their roots to grasp for support.
If the drainage on the lot is suffering beneath the weight of all that water, then a contractor will need to re-grade the property or install a French drain. Both of these will carry the water away from the house, lest it damage the foundation.
Homeowners may use their own method of erosion control by strategically placing pavers, stones, railroad ties, and gravel. Planting ground-hugging plants like phlox and some types of ivy do a good job of keeping excess water from getting near the foundation. Using gutter cleaning services would work well here.
Now that we’ve seen how some of the terrible storms that hit Southern Florida affect a house, let’s examine the foundation. Some might ask, “What’s a little water? What harm can it do?” Answering along the same lines, what was a little water to the Grand Canyon? Did it do much harm?
Water takes advantage of cracks and crevices. When drainage around the house is good, water won’t impact the foundation. If it’s not, then the ground around the foundation swells. It puts pressure against the foundation, causing cracks and crevices. Then the water moves into the structure.
Pressure from beneath the house is caused by ground water or the water table too close to the surface. It presses against the bottom of the foundation, causing cracks in the concrete. Reconfiguring the drainage system and installing a sump pump will help homeowners keep the integrity of their foundation intact.
Puddling is another type of assault on a foundation. When the drainage system is overwhelmed and the gutters and downspouts aren’t helping, the water puddles around the foundation. Eventually, it will erode the material of the foundation, seeping into the basement.
This is the most serious result of some of the storms that hit South Florida and its homes. The only answer is to jack up the house, repair the foundation, and then examine the gutters and downspouts. Clearing the gutters of debris and water, and aiming the downspouts away from the house will help keep the foundation from suffering the consequences of the storms.
Mold And Water Damages
What we’ve been discussing is just the damages done to the outside of the house. What about the inside? Water overflowing gutters seeps into the siding and therefrom onto the walls of the house. The snag to that is that homeowners don’t see mold until the day they can’t breathe. Water damages at least appear on walls and ceilings as yellow or brown rings. Additionally, water rots the wood of the walls and framing.
Mold attaches to any surface, even cloth. When mold grows in your walls, it attaches to the wood, the sheetrock, and the insulation. It eats away glue and paper as well. It needs these and other materials as food, so mold will eat away at a home until something collapses. Before that happens, all a homeowner needs is to smell the distinctive musty smell to know he has a serious problem.
Most materials can’t be cleaned but need to be replaced. This is a problem when the framing on into the house needs to be replaced due to mold. Most people find it cheaper to just engage in cleaning gutters in Miami.
Rot is another problem along the same lines as mold. Rot and mold need warmth, moisture, and something to feed on in order to live. Rot usually sets in around the crawl space.
Wet rot is a serious thing, because it doesn’t stop until it has eaten a whole piece of timber. This timber, since it’s in the crawl space, has something to support. When the floors become saggy, squeaky, and bouncy, their support is going or gone. You probably have wet rot.
Gutters aren’t just decorative things put on a house to make it look better or sell faster. It’s basically preventive medicine for a house. Gutters keep a house intact literally from top to bottom.
Cleaning gutters isn’t a chore homeowners gladly rush out to do. Using a ladder, scraping out debris and wet leaves, then moving down the line is no fun. Homeowners have to weigh how much fun cleaning the gutters is to against paying for the house to be jacked up so the foundation can be repaired.
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