Structural damage can be a homeowner’s worst nightmare, mainly because it often renders your home unsafe or uninhabitable. As an underpinning expert, I’m here to guide you through the common causes of structural damage, how to prevent and mitigate it, and what to do if damage occurs in your Adelaide home.
Common Causes of Structural Damage
Natural disasters like earthquakes, storms, and floods can devastate a home’s structure. In addition, extreme weather conditions can lead to soil erosion or ground shifting, affecting your home’s foundation.
Termites, carpenter ants, and other wood-boring insects can wreak havoc on your home’s structure, causing significant damage over time if left unchecked.
General Wear and Tear
Normal wear and tear of your home’s components, such as roofing materials, doors, windows, and plumbing, can cause damage if not properly maintained. This wear may gradually weaken your home’s structure and create safety hazards.
Preventative and Mitigation Measures
One of the best ways to protect your home from structural damage is by maintaining proper drainage on your property. This includes installing gutter systems and downpipes and ensuring water drains away from your home’s foundation. Proper drainage prevents soil erosion and keeps water from seeping into your home’s foundation and walls.
Regularly inspect your home’s structure, including the foundation, roof, walls, doors, and windows. Additionally, schedule professional inspections for your plumbing and electrical systems to detect problems early on, helping avoid costly repairs.
Foundations can be reinforced by adding steel bars or concrete, ensuring they can better withstand natural disasters and ground shifting. Consult a professional to assess your home’s foundation and recommend appropriate measures.
House Levelling and Underpinning
If your home has uneven floors or cracks in the foundation, house levelling and underpinning services can stabilise your home’s structure. These processes involve adjusting your home’s foundation or adding support beneath the existing foundation for better stability.
What to Do if Damage Occurs
Contact a structural engineer or professional contractor if you find any structural damage in your home. They will assess the damage, provide repair options, and ensure the repairs are completed safely and effectively. Remember, not every damaged component requires complete replacement—often, targeted repairs can restore your home’s integrity.
Insurance companies typically cover structural damage caused by natural disasters or other sudden incidents. If your home suffers damage, contact your insurance provider immediately to discuss your coverage and the claims process.
Working with Professionals
To ensure your home remains safe and structurally sound for years to come:
- Hire licensed, insured, and reputable professionals for regular inspections and repair work.
- Obtain multiple quotes for repair projects before deciding on a contractor.
- Communicate openly with professionals, asking questions and providing them with necessary information regarding your home’s history and previous repair work.
You can help protect your home from structural damage by taking precautions and employing preventive measures. With regular maintenance, inspections, and the assistance of professionals, your Adelaide home will remain a safe and comfortable space for you and your loved ones for years to come.
If you need help on home inspection, structural restoration, fixing cracks in walls and floors, underpinning, house restumping and levelling, contact John at JR Southern Underpinning.