Extreme weather conditions like floods, storms, hurricanes, and blizzards can wreak havoc on the structure of a poorly designed and badly constructed home. A well-planned and a well-made home, on the other hand, can withstand the destructive forces of even the worst weather conditions.
Use this list to learn how to check a home’s capability to hold up against the weather. This will also serve as a guide for homeowners on how to thoroughly inspect a home for structural damage.
- Inspect the roof’s exteriors. Check for any roofing materials that have cracked, split, or broken. These can be easily blown away by a strong wind or washed off by a heavy rain and cause further structural damage to the exposed areas of the house.
- Also inspect the interior of the roof. The braces and trusses should not have any worrisome cracks or breaks. Examine them carefully for any signs of bowing or buckling as these could be indicators of an imminent structural damage.
- Check the areas where the roof connects with the exterior walls of the house. Any cracks or breaks could mean that the roof is slowly sliding off or moving. This is one area of the roof that always needs to be inspected as it is highly dangerous if it sustains structural damage.
- The area where the roof attaches to the chimney should not be overlooked. This part should be securely connected and firmly sealed.
- Examine the chimney itself. The bricks forming the chimney should be compact and stable. One loose brick can cause the entire thing to come crumbling down especially during extreme weather conditions.
- Loosened bricks or shattered blocks in any part of the house should always be inspected. These could be indicators of a much bigger structural damage deep within the house.
- Check walls, columns, and posts that carry most of the weight of the house. Look them over to see if they have not cracked or buckled under the heavy load. If they do show some structural damage, reinforce them by adding another load-bearing structure to the home.
- Go over to the lower parts of the walls where they are closest to the foundation. Hairlines and tiny cracks are no cause for alarm, but they could lead to larger and deeper fractures. Ensure that the foundation of the house has been strengthened so that any ground movement or shifting will not affect the stability of the home.
- Examine stairwells and check for gaps between their frames and the walls. Any gaps found should be closed right away.
- Nuts and bolts on the frames of the house’s foundation should be complete. They should be tightly fastened and free from rust.
- Look for nails that may have popped up from wooden frames, walls, or floorboards. Hammer these in or replace them with new nails.
- Any construction materials that are moldy, rotting, or termite-infested should be treated and changed immediately.
- The lot that the house is built on can also be a reason for structural damage. Call a building inspector to know if the ground beneath the home structure is firm and solid.