One of the most destructive forces that can damage your home is water. Aside from the obvious damage you can have after a flood, even the smallest of leaks can wreak havoc on the home. Water damage can rot the wood in your home, attract insects and worst of all, cause mold. Sometimes you don’t even know you have a leak and by the time you find out you already have thousands of dollars of damage. Let’s look at the hidden sources of water damage in your home.
The Obvious Leaks
Some leaks are pretty obvious such as big cracks in your foundation, burst pipes spewing water everywhere or water coming in through the roof or the windows. These are pretty in your face and they are generally an easy fix. But you can have small leaks that you don’t even notice until you inspect your house and go looking for them. Small cracks in your plumbing can drip water in your walls for months before it does enough damage for you to see it. The same holds true with tiny holes in your roof.
One of the most common areas that is prone to leaks and moisture is your basement. This can have a number of causes including fiberglass insulation that traps moisture. You should never insulate basement walls with fiberglass it will absorb the water and not allow the space to properly dry out. You can have a problem with the weeping tiles or poor grading around the foundation. If your basement constantly smells damp and musty then it might be time to see where the moisture is getting in. You’re better off using rigid insulation or ‘blue board’ to help with ventilation.
The attic is another place where you are prone to leaks and trapped moisture. If you live in the northern part of the US and your attic is poorly insulated you can have water backing up and turning into ice dams. Warm air goes from the main part of the home to the attic and it creates humidity, water pools under your roof and that in turn can lead to an attic full of mold. Here are some ways that this can happen more easily.
- The holes that are drilled into the ceiling to run the plumbing and electrical that have not been properly sealed.
- Exhaust fans in the bathroom that blow air directly into the attic.
- The hatch to the attic not sealing properly.
- Pot lights that haven’t been properly installed.
On the other hand if you live in the south where winter isn’t an issue then your air conditioning system can be the cause of moisture buildup in your attic. If you have an air conditioning system that was designed for a bigger house it generates too much humidity. If you’re duct work hasn’t been installed properly you can end up with too much humidity.
Having a moisture problem requires a specialist. You want to make sure that you get the issues addressed before you end up with even bigger problems. Moisture buildup is another reason that you have to do regular inspections on your home paying particular attention to the basements and attics.