Homeowners are probably racking their brains over the extent of foundation damage they have received from the recent storms and tornadoes this March. They might be asking themselves how much work and money they will have to invest in repairs. It can be a grueling process to restore lives back to normal after storms hit.
It is important to carefully inspect your home after a tornado or high winds for signs of hidden damage. Just because your home hasn’t fallen to pieces during a storm does not mean that the foundation wasn’t affected. Unseen damage can get worse, causing more severe and costly secondary damage if left undetected. We are going to give you some checks and balances for hidden damage and steps you can take to recover from it.
Checking For Hidden Damage
- After a tornado or a high wind event, always look for wall cracks in spots you did not have cracks before. This might be something you just happen to notice, but take it upon yourself to seek out all the cracks. Cracks that are a quarter of an inch or more are signs that your walls have shifted and settled. Windows and doors are going to be the most telling because they are the weakest spots in your structure. Check closely in rooms that aren’t normally visited.
- Take a visit outside to check for more cracks or other signs of lifting in your foundation. New, physically visible cracks in the home’s foundation will be noticeable. Peek back inside and check out the levelness of your floors. Any changes in the level of your floor will indicate a lift in the home’s foundation.
- Water leakage is another indicator that damage has occurred and that your plumbing needs to be looked at. Inspect closely around your water heater and water softener for leakage that has not occurred before. Be sure to flush all of your toilets, turn on all water faucets, and check plumbing connections for leaks.
- Damage to your roof will be unseen until it has rained a few times. In the days or weeks following a tornado or high wind storm, pay attention to your ceiling for any yellowing, browning, water stains, or water streaks. These will most likely come down the wall from the ceiling if the rain has penetrated your structure.
- Inspect your gutters and storm drainage system. Unexpected leaking may have cause be a blockage or breakage in the system.
Utilizing these tips will help you prevent further long-term foundation damage which could result in more expensive and costly repairs for your home.
Steps for Storm Recovery
- Be incredibly careful getting comfortable inside your home before making sure it is structurally safe. Don’t take any chances if you are told to stay out because debris may be hazardous and your home may be on verge of collapse.
- Make temporary repairs to prevent further damage, and keep all of your receipts.
- Call your insurance company and see what they will cover in order to make temporary repairs. Small losses may be settled quickly, whereas extensive claims will of course take longer.
- Notify creditors if bills have been lost or you are unable to pay so your credit doesn’t take a hit.
- If your home is unlivable or has been destroyed, ask your utility company to stop billing.
- In order to speed up your claims process, inventory your home for damaged or lost items before your adjuster arrives.
- You may qualify for tax breaks due to your losses, work with a qualified tax expert to help you find out.
Hopefully, we have been able to give you some peace of mind to take care of your home in a hard time. If anything, being given something to read to prepare for a bad storm or tornado season can offer some value.
If you are in need of resolving damage caused by a tornado or strong winds storm in the Nashville area, give Barrier Waterproofing Systems a call at (615) 257-1060 | (931) 536-1168. You can also ask for help with estimating the damage done to your home.