Your home may be your pride and joy but that doesn’t mean it isn’t also an awful lot of hassle. Just when you think you’ve got everything in working order, something else is likely to break unexpectedly. In an ideal world, you’d get straight to repairing the problem, but you probably have social commitments, work and many other things on your plate. Plus, sometimes you’d rather just relax – particularly if your home’s problem is a minor one.
It is important, however, to distinguish between the problems that will stay minor and those that will develop into serious issues for your home if left unchecked. While it is true that some repairs are more important than others, here are a list of those that you simply cannot schedule for “some other time.”
Let’s start with an easy one. Caulking is when you seal gaps and cracks between two materials, most commonly seen around the bath or shower. This is intended to create a waterproof seal so that the water you use only goes where it’s meant to. The problem is that, even when carried out correctly, caulking will degrade over time and start to split, letting those tiny drops of water go wherever they please.
Although a bit of damaged caulking may not seem that important, excess moisture in your home can cause a huge number of issues. Particularly if it’s located in any area where the damage can fester unseen, like behind your bath. If you do spot a cracked seal in your bathroom, don’t wait until it’s too late. If you’re an experienced DIY-er, you can purchase some sealant yourself relatively cheaply and repair the damage – but if you’re not confident that you’ll be able to create a watertight seal then it’s perhaps better left to a professional. The job won’t cost much, but it could save you a lot of money in the long-term.
Damage to the roof is easily neglected because it’s all the way up there, far away from the parts of your home that you actually spend time in. What’s more, when you leave or approach your home, unless there’s a huge hole in your roof, you probably don’t take much notice of the accumulated wear and tear it suffers as a result of being exposed to the elements. However, damage to your roof is something that you really need to stay on top of.
Even a few missing tiles here and there could develop into a leak. The problem with roof repair is that it is not the sort of task that is easily fixed yourself. Firstly, even just getting onto the roof is a dangerous task and you should never operate a ladder without someone else present to provide support. Secondly, once you’re on the roof, there is a strong possibility that you may actually cause further damage if you are not sure what you’re doing.
If you notice that water is pooling on your roof or that there is visible damage of any kind, the best advice would be to call in the professionals. Specialist firms like Mr. Roof will carry out a thorough inspection of the damage before proceeding and then carry out the repairs in a single day. What’s more, try to look for a roofing contractor that will provide some form of guarantee for their work, ensuring that you won’t have to fork out for extra repairs in the near future.
It doesn’t matter how much of a clean-freak you are, sometimes unwanted pests decide to take root in your home. Infestations can spread quickly and will cause varying degrees of damage, which is why it’s best to get them removed as soon as possible.
One of the most commonly found household pests is woodworm which, although harmless to your health, can cause unwanted damage. The term “woodworm” actually relates to a variety of different beetles that lay their eggs in wooden items. Their larvae then hatch and burrow their way around the wood, feeding as they go. This creates structural damage in the wood which looks unsightly and can lead to breakages. If you spot small holes appearing in your furniture or weak floorboards, you could have a woodworm infestation. Investing in woodworm treatment can help prevent a breakout and protect your home.
The other major pest that everyone will have heard of is bed bugs. The creepy crawlies will actually live anywhere where they have a fresh supply of human blood to feast on, so a nice warm home is ideal for them. Bed bugs can cause irritation and potentially lead to secondary infection due to the scratching that they encourage. If you want to remove them from your home, a professional heat treatment can be used to destroy all life stages of the bed bug, without having to introduce fumes of chemicals into your home.
Electrics on the blink?
You may think that the fact that your lights flicker from time to time is nothing to worry about, or that when your fuse keeps blowing it’s just bad luck, but it could be the result of a more serious electrical problem. If you’ve noticed any of the aforementioned issues or if you have power outlets that feel warm when in use, then it might be worth calling an electrician to investigate whether you have a problem.
Approximately 51,000 home fires have an electrical source every year and it is difficult to know exactly when and where a problem will begin. To reduce the likelihood of a fire starting in your home, make sure you do not overload outlets and request an inspection of all your electrics in your property. Just one faulty section of wiring could have disastrous consequences.
A home’s foundation is its most important feature. Everything literally rests on it. Therefore, foundation problems should be taken seriously because foundation repairs can be pretty expensive, running into the tens of thousands of dollars sometimes – depending on the repairs. You can avoid foundation problems by monitoring your home’s foundation for issues and by getting a periodic foundation inspection.
The reason why shifting foundations often get left to deteriorate is because it is a very slow process, which takes place over many years. If you start to notice that any of your doors are not shutting as well as they used to or there are visible cracks on your exterior walls, consult a professional engineer to determine how serious the problem is.
The cost of foundation repairs can vary massively, which is why you’ll want to solve minor issues before they have a chance to develop. Bolting on steel braces, for example, can help shore up your foundations for just a few hundred dollars, but installing a whole new foundation could cost as much as $40,000.
Paint peeling off
Although a bit of peeling paint won’t be an immediate cause for concern, over time it can cause issues. The paint on your interior walls serves an important practical purpose, adding a layer of protection. A quick paint job, therefore, isn’t just about making your home look nice. It can also help to prevent the development of rot and mold. There are many minor maintenance jobs like this around their home, and in most cases, they are better off done sooner rather than later.
A leaky pipe is one of the most common home repair issues, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a serious one. Over time, the water dripping from the leak can cause a variety of problems, including causing rot to many wooden fixtures in your home. In addition, excess water can contribute to the development of mold in your home, which can have health implications.
The build-up of mold can result in allergic reactions, asthma attacks, and other respiratory issues, particularly among infants and the elderly. Although it is easier to simply wipe the mold away, you can only prevent it from returning by tackling the root cause of the problem – excess moisture.
If you’ve found a leaky pipe, the good news is that, in most cases, it is easily fixed. The fittings may simply need tightening, for example, for which you’ll need a wrench and a bit of elbow grease. Alternatively, you may need to replace one of the washers inside the pipe, but these are affordable and easy to re-fit.
Drainage problems can a have a number of causes, from blocked gutters to improper land grading. The former is easily sorted, simply by removing any blockages that have built up over time. The latter, however, is a more substantial job, but just as important.
Land grading relates to the gradient of the land surrounding your property. Ideally, this is created in such a way as to direct excess water away from your home, but when this is performed incorrectly, households can find pools of water up against their exterior walls. This can cause mold and rot, or in extreme cases can result in subsidence, where your home actually starts to sink further into the ground.
It can be difficult to find the motivation for home repairs, particularly when they don’t seem all that important. However, if you can get into a good habit of looking after your home as soon as it needs any care, you’ll save yourself from some major headaches in the future.
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Newly middle-aged wife of 1, Mom of 3, Grandma of 2. A professional blogger who has lived in 3 places since losing her home to a house fire in October 2018 with her husband. Becky appreciates being self-employed which has allowed her to work from 'anywhere'. Life is better when you can laugh. As you can tell by her Facebook page where she keeps the humor memes going daily. Becky looks forward to the upcoming new year. It will be fun to see what 2020 holds.