Needless to say the Knoxville area has received quite a bit of rain this year. I heard someone say the other day that we have received more than Seattle this year! With lots of rain comes lots of water. With lots of water comes drainage issues in your Knoxville home. Here are some clues that your home may have a drainage issue that needs attention.
- WHEN IT RAINS YOUR GUTTERS POUR – Is water flowing over the edge of your gutters like a waterfall in Cade’s Cove? If so this probably means that the gutters are full of debris (leaves, branches, etc). Not around to see the gutters when it rains? Then look for these other clues that your gutters are full: vertical streaks of dirt on the outside of the gutters, siding or brick splattered with mud, or vertical strips of peeling paint on the house. Solve this problem by keeping your gutters clean.
- ABBREVIATED DOWNSPOUT SYNDROME – OK, it’s really not called that, but it’s still a problem. This is when your downspouts are too short and cause all of the water coming off the roof to dump next to the house. Did you know that a 1000 square foot roof can dump as much as 600 gallons of water? Guess where that water goes when your downspouts are too short? Right along your foundation, and if you have one, into your basement. Solve this problem by adding extensions to the downspouts, allowing the water to dump away from the house.
- WATER STAINS IN THE BASEMENT – If you see water stains on the foundation walls of your basement you are experiencing a drainage issue. The staining is most likely being caused by surface water seeping down (caused by one of the issues above or because the soil is not sloping adequately away from your home). Solve this problem by eliminating the gutter issues mentioned above or regrading the soil so it slopes away from the home. If it is not being caused by one of those issues, it could be a larger issue such as the basement effected by a fluctuating water table or storm drains backing up during heavy rains. Solve this problem by having a professional install an interior drain system with pumps.
- EXPANDING CRACKS IN THE FOUNDATION – Every home will eventually have cracks that come from normal settling. Those aren’t the cracks we are worried about. What you need to watch out for are cracks larger than 1/8″ wide that continue to expand. This may be a sign of a drainage problem effecting the foundation. Solve this problem by contacting a structural engineer to assess the situation. Better safe than sorry.
- MOLD IN THE ATTIC – What? How do you get mold in the attic? Look for mold growing on the underside of the roof. Although this is at the top of the house it could be pointing to a drainage problem at the ground level. Oftentimes if their is a drainage issue causing moisture in the basement or crawlspace of a home, that moisture will rise through the house and form condensation on the underside of the roof in the attic. Solve this problem by finding the source of the moisture and eliminating it (most likely one of the causes mentioned above). Also check to be sure one or more bathroom vents aren’t venting directly into the attic as this can form condensation as well. If so, solve this by venting them through the roof or an outside wall.
- WHO KEEPS MOVING MY MULCH! – If you notice your mulch moving, say onto your driveway, or depositing somewhere else, you have a drainage issue. Nothing major, but you’ll need to move some dirt around to help the soil drain properly. Always remember to keep the soil flowing downhill from your home as that is the way you want the water to run.
Have any other questions regarding real estate or need a recommendation for a contractor to help you with your drainage issues? Contact the Holloway-Westerling Group today!