Ask an Inspector – Foundation Maintenance During the Summer

unstable-soilSummer’s here! And we all know what that means — hot days, high humidity and lack of rain. As a home inspector, one of the things we look for during the summer months is gaps between the foundation and sod. This happens when the dirt dries and contracts, creating a noticeable void. The first instinct is to fill the gap with dirt, which is actually one of the worst things you can do. The excess dirt will swell with the rain and create undue pressure on the basement walls, leading to cracks and possible foundation movement. Instead, water the ground with either a sprinkler or hose starting at the foundation and approximately 6′ feet outward. This will encourage the soil to swell back to its normal dimensions without creating excessive pressure on the basement walls.

img_0379-small1Have some fun in the summer sun, and watch for our article next month where we’ll talk about those pesky termites, and how to catch them before they do any real damage.

-Robert Ladd
Legacy Home Inspections