Drainage

If you have been following our Facebook page  and tweets we wrote about moisture intrusion and drainage. A lot of leaks are due to poor drainage and or lack of maintenance.  So this weeks blog is about drainage on the home and how to help avoid the terrible effects of moisture intrusion. So lets begin.

With the rain season in Florida a lot of us experience areas on the home that get more rain water then others. Some of this maybe the landscaping and some is deterioration of somewhat on the home. Lets start with the roof. the flashing around vents is an actual maintenance item. Then you have the valleys which leaves and debris can be collected and will contribute to water getting in them. And then you have the gutter system. Having a gutter is great but if its undersized then you shouldn’t have any at all.

Alot of Florida homes don’t have gutters because they think that the rain is too heavy to capture. One foot of 5″ K-Style gutter holds 1.2 gallons of water. One foot of 6″ K-Style gutter holds 2.0 gallons of water. For commercial applications, box gutters, can be made in 7, or 8 inches or even larger custom sizes that hold even more water. So this is something to think about. But you are saying, I have good gutters. Now you may need to extend the downspouts. Something to think about is adding a French Drain to the foundation area so to divert the water away from the foundation. This is a major difference between the homes here and up north. A lot of homes with basements always have a sump pump for this reason.

And lastly our driveways and other areas is something to think about as well. Adding a channel drain is a good idea. And keeping an eye on the mulch and landscaping as you do not want the area to be sloped toward the foundation.

So with this in closing. Check with the local building department about re-capturing rain water. It can actually be reused for watering the lawn to even water for toilets. Thank you and if you have any questions about this or any of our services, feel free to check us out at; www.pascoremodel.com or even better call us at 352-437-5300.

 

 

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Gutters

Sunday’s blog is about gutters. It seams that down here a lot of homes do not have gutters installed or are installed later. Gutters are the number one way to stop land erosion, flooding, and inconvenience. Additionally an improper gutter system is more defective then none at all. So lets begin about this theory of transferring rain water to a different location.

The main purpose of gutters is to direct the rain water off the roof and discharge to an area away from the foundation. This may sound simple. But if you have a gutter system installed and it is not the appropriate type you are wasting your money. For a typical residential home, a lot of gutters are 5 or 6 inch. The 6 inch gutter is definitely ideal for areas that get some rain but not a lot. 5 inch gutter I would recommend if you live Southern California or Arizona where the rain is very small amount. Living along the east coast like Florida, Maryland, Delaware there is a lot of precipitation that gets in the gutter. In certain states they work constantly from rain to snow. Here in Land O Lakes Florida the rain season constantly works the gutter. So you may ask what is the answer. Its easy.

If you have a gutter system installed it has to contour with the roof. For example you should not install a 5″ gutter on a church roof that is 12-12 pitch. Totally defeats the purpose because of the roof pitch. The gutters are over loaded. But for a single family home like in Clearwater Florida a 6 inch gutter may work for a single family home with a small pitch. Then you have the down spouts to discharge the water. Again, you do not want water going back toward the foundation. Why? Erosion, leaks, issues, and just a plain headache.

The best way to discharge water off the roof is to have the rain water discharge away from the property. Sounds easy but you do not want the rain water discharging in front the garage or your side entrance. Additionally, you can have a #frenchdrain installed as well for your gutter systems. So lets think about this. Do you want to have a system that does not work properly but say we have gutters. NO. If the pitch of the roof in #Florida is above 4-12 pitch then you need at least a 6 inch gutter. If not the water when it rains down here will defeat the purpose. A lot of manufactures will use a 7 inch gutter with a leaf guard so you do not need to clean anymore. This is good, but check other manufactures too.

Make sure if you want to do the investment of gutters they are seamless and check the warranty. Also ask about the gutter covers. Trust me. For more information check our website at; www.pascoremodel.com or call us anytime at 352-437-5300

Moisture Intrusion

With the rain storm we are experiencing in Florida this week, I wanted to share about water leaks and what you can do to prevent and/or repair the area.

Water leaks are a mess, this we all know. It cost money, time, aggravation and most of all it can ruin some family heirlooms.  So you may noticed water getting in crevis and cracks that you never thought of.  So if you notice after the rain, the water getting in thru windows, maybe water stains on the drywall, or into the garage. Also, if you have a modular home the crawl space is very important to make sure that that area is dry. So, lets begin about this topic.

If you notice water getting in the windows when they are closed there is likely the window seals have expired or the window is not closing all the way. Some windows with the balances control the window to stay closed and used to keep up. The balances may need replacing, the tracks need cleaning, the caulking on the exterior needs to be re-done. This is just few examples of what is occurring. Now if the that is not the case, there is times where especially on modular/mobile homes the water gets behind the siding and can cause damage to the framing and drywall. If that is the case, then normally there is no flashing around the windows or moisture barrier on the sheathing.

So, with heavy rain, we also get roof leaks. If the shingles are about to expire and heavy rain is occurring  this will be a sign to replace the shingles. Additionally, the vents and the flashing on the roof may need to be re-tarred or replaced. Alot of times, with heavy rains, the drip edge and soffit is not secured to the home.

Lastly, we all will experience some water entering the garage. This can be prevented with either sand bags, a drain in front of the door, or the rubber seal not being dry rotted.  Also, gutters on homes will assist with land erosion around the foundation and diverting the water away from the foundation.  Making sure the gutters are not clogged is essential for this rain season.

So, I hope this helps with any issues. Of course feel free to call my office if you notice any issues with your home. We always provide free estimates and schedule our work in a timely manner. www.pascoremodel.com or 352-437-5300 We service areas from Zephyrhills to New Port Richey. From Holiday to Dade City. We are centrally located in Land O Lakes, Florida.

Water Damage

This weeks blog is about water damage and what to do if you have a flood or moisture intrusion. Water damage can be very costly and doing some preventive maintenance around the home can save you time, money and headaches of costly repairs. So, lets begin.

When we have a flood say maybe from an appliance in the kitchen or the toilet leaks water goes everywhere. The biggest thing to do is shut off any water supply and then get all the water up that you can. Next is to dry the area with fans. Now keep in mind that you want to try keep the area dry and a fan maybe need to run for a day or so. But if you start to see buckling or stains in the floor product, then you want to call a contractor immediately.

When having to remove the product due to water damage, then this may add some cost to your budget. But noticing it immediately, the contractor may save some of the floor, if possible. But now lets talk about some preventive maintenance measures that may help you identify if there is an issue and some tips.

First, did you know that any shut off valve should be replaced after 5 years of service. Yes that is true. Another tip, once a month it is a good idea to inspect the underside of cabinets for any moisture stains. A small drip noticing know from the drain pipe or valve will save you costly repairs down range. Its also a good idea to check the piping at the shower faucet. This is an area that is always over looked. Some of this can be done when you are doing the monthly major clean of your home.

So, you may say ok, great advice. But what about water entering the home from the exterior. These few good tips may help you as well. If you experience a heavy rain then it maybe advisable to enter the attic. Take a look around where there maybe vents or nails penetrating the sheathing. Wet spots will be noticeable immediately. Another area, check the exterior walls around the windows and doors. You may notice a small water stain that could be a minor re-caulk around the window. Or the gutters are clogged and water ran into the soffit.  Moisture intrusion will start immediately if there is a gap or hole. Small notices of this may not be seen for a while. But there are always a sign that this happened.

So, if you think you see a small stain that just appeared for no reason or want us to check certain areas please give us a call or email. We perform these type of repairs all the time in Land O Lakes, Zephyrhills, Trinity, and Hudson Florida. We are always here for you. 352-437-5300 or pascoremodel@gmail.com    Thank You.

Lawn Maintenance

This weeks blog will be about lawn maintenance and repair. We aren’t blogging about how cut the grass but maintenance and the Christmas decorations and safety.

As a lot of us, we are all decorating the house with lights and other decorations. And as we are decorating now maybe the time to think about some upgrades or repairs to tighten up the lawn area. For example, the exterior receptacles making sure they are GFCI protected. The windows caulking is intact and not cracked or missing. The brick has mortar in place. Gutters may need some cleaning while placing the lights on the gutter. Shrubbery is trimmed approximately 36″ away from the house foundation. And lastly your mulch is pitched away from the home.

These are just a few examples that may need to be done. And of course we can assist with these items. Feel free to contact us anytime at 352-437-5300 or email, pascoremodel@gmail.com

 

 

fall maintenance

Fall Maintenance

As we are approaching the autumn season, home owners will have the exterior maintenance tasks coming up. Now I know working in the yard or doing other projects is not priority during football season. However, did you know we have a free annual maintenance check list. Yes. We give this to home owners to help guide them along the way to keep up with these tasks.

For example, during the fall we have the raking of the leaves which everyone is used too. But did you think of your outside water faucet? Or what about checking around the foundation for potential leaks and cracks. While you are cleaning the leaves out of the gutters, that may be a great time to have gutter guards installed. Additionally, maybe inspect the roof and flashing around the vents. Did you ever think about the exterior lighting? Adding lights in the garden can help with the frost so it does not kill your vegetables. Also if you have a pond with fish or little fountain now is the time to clean that out before we head into winter.

As you can see, these are just a few of some those items that we need to put on our to do list for the fall season. And Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair is here to help you. We can assist in many items for your exterior maintenance. For a free check list email or call our office anytime. 352-437-5300 or pascoremodel@gmail.com

 

Sample check list below:

1.Roof: Check the roof and around vents, skylights, and chimneys for leaks. Repair as necessary.

2. Attic: If there is no ridge vent, keep gable vents open year-round to ensure proper ventilation.

3. Gutters: Clean the gutters and drain pipes so leaves won’t clog them and be sure they drain away from the house. (Fall: In cold-climate areas) Drain outside faucets.

4. Fireplace: Clean the fireplace of ashes. (Fall) Check the chimney for loose or missing mortar. Have the chimney professionally cleaned. Make sure the damper closes tightly. (Spring) Leave the damper open for improved ventilation if the home is not air-conditioned.

5. Filters: Remember to clean or replace filters once a month, or as needed. Check and clean the dryer vent, air conditioner, stove hood, and room fans. Keep heating and cooling vents clean and free from furniture and draperies.

6. Safety Equipment: Ensure that all smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers are in good working order. Replace batteries in appropriate devices as needed, or at least twice each year.

7. Air Conditioner: (Fall: In cold-climate areas) Remove window air-conditioners, or put weatherproof covers on them.

8. Refrigerator: Make sure your refrigerator door seals are airtight. Test them by closing the door over a dollar bill. If you can pull the bill out easily, the latch may need to be adjusted or the seal may need to be replaced. In addition, if you have a coil-back refrigerator, vacuum the coils at least twice each year. Your refrigerator will run more efficiently with clean coils. Also, stock up! A full refrigerator uses less energy than an empty one.

9. Faucets: Check for leaky faucets in the kitchen and bathroom(s). Replace washers as necessary.

10. Windows and Doors: Seal drafty doors and windows. If you added up all of the small cracks where heating and cooling escapes from a home, it would be the same as having a window open. Replace seals as needed.

11. Storm Windows and Screens: (Fall) Take down screens (if removable type) and replace with storm windows. (Spring) Remove, clean, and store storm windows (if removable). Check and patch all door and window screens. Put screens up (if removable type).

12. Siding and Paint: Look for cracks and holes in house siding or paint. Replace caulk if necessary. A carpet knife can work well for cutting away old caulking from house siding. Slice down alongside it from both directions with the hook-like blade, then use the knife to lift out the old caulk bead intact.

13. Check all baseboards and flooring with slab grade homes. This could be a sign of moisture intrustion.

14. Heating System: (Fall) Have the heating system serviced. Change filters.

15. Hot Water Heater: (Fall) Drain the hot water heater. Remove sediment from the bottom of the tank.

#RoofLeak, Roof Leaks, Moisture Intrusion

Moisture Intrusion

This weeks blog is about Moisture Intrusion and inspecting.  Since we are about to enter the rain season here in Tampa Florida this I felt would be a great source of information
Moisture intrusion can be the cause of building defects, as well as health ailments for the building’s occupants. Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair, LLC have an understanding of how moisture may enter a building, and where problem areas commonly occur. This is mainly true about older homes such as the ones along the beach area of Largo Florida.
Some common moisture-related problems include:
  • structural wood decay;
  • high indoor humidity and resulting condensation;
  • expansive soil, which may crack the foundation through changes in volume, or softened soil, which may lose its ability to support an overlying structure;
  • undermined foundations;
  • metal corrosion;
  • ice dams; and
  • mold growth.  Mold can only grow in the presence of high levels of moisture. People who suffer from the following conditions can be seriously (even fatally) harmed if exposed to elevated levels of airborne mold spores:
    • asthma;
    • allergies;
    • lung disease; and/or
    • compromised immune systems.

Note:  People who do not suffer from these ailments may still be harmed by elevated levels of airborne mold spores.

How does moisture get into the house?

Moisture or water vapor moves into a house in the following ways:

  • air infiltration. Air movement accounts for more than 98% of all water vapor movement in building cavities. Air naturally moves from high-pressure areas to lower ones by the easiest path possible, such as a hole or crack in the building envelope. Moisture transfer by air currents is very fast (in the range of several hundred cubic feet of air per minute). Replacement air will infiltrate through the building envelope unless unintended air paths are carefully and permanently sealed;
  • by diffusion through building material. Most building materials slow moisture diffusion, to a large degree, although they never stop it completely;
  • leaks from roof;
  • plumbing leaks;
  • flooding, which can be caused by seepage from runoff or rising groundwater; it may be seasonal or catastrophic; and
  • human activities, including bathing, cooking, dish-washing and washing clothes. Indoor plants, too, may be a significant source of high levels of humidity.
Climate Zones
 
In the northern U.S., moisture vapor problems are driven primarily by high indoor relative humidity levels, combined with low outdoor temperatures during the winter. In the southern U.S. (especially the southeast), the problem is largely driven by high outdoor humidity and low indoor temperatures during summer months. Mixed climates are exposed to both conditions and can experience both types of problems. Humid climates, in general, will be more of a problem than dry climates. Wind-driven rain is the main cause of leaks through the building envelope.

Inspectors can check for moisture intrusion in the following areas:

Roofs

A roof leak may lead to the growth of visible mold colonies in the attic that can grow unnoticed. Roof penetrations increase the likelihood of water leaks due to failed gaskets, sealants and flashing. The number of roof penetrations may be reduced by a variety of technologies and strategies, including:

  • consolidation of vent stacks below the roof;
  • exhaust fan caps routed through walls instead of the roof;
  • high-efficiency combustion appliances, which can be sidewall-vented;
  • electrically powered H.V.A.C. equipment and hot water heaters that do not require flue; and
  • adequate flashing. Oftentimes, inspectors discover missing, incorrectly installed or corroded flashing pipes.

Plumbing

  • Distribution pipes and plumbing fixtures can be the source of large amounts of moisture intrusion. If the wall is moist and/or discolored, then moisture damage is already in progress. Most plumbing is hidden in the walls, so serious problems can begin unnoticed.
  • One of the most important means of moisture management in the bathroom is the exhaust fan. A non-functioning exhaust fan overloads the bathroom with damp air. If the exhaust fan doesn’t turn on automatically when the bathroom is in use, consider recommending switching the wiring or switch. The lack of an exhaust fan should be called out in the inspection report. The fan should vent into the exterior, not into the attic.
  • The bathroom sink, in particular, is a common source of moisture intrusion and damage. Although overflow drains can prevent the spillage of water onto the floor, they can become corroded and allow water to enter the cabinet.
  • Use a moisture meter to check for elevated moisture levels in the sub-floor around the toilet and tub.
  • Bathroom windows need to perform properly in a wide range of humidity and temperature conditions. Check to see if there are any obvious breaks in the weatherstripping and seals. Are there are stains or flaking on the painted surfaces?
  • Check showers and bathtubs. Is the caulking is cracked, stiff or loose in spots? Are there cracked tiles or missing grout that may channel water to vulnerable areas? If some water remains in the bathtub after draining, it may be a warning sign of possible structural weakening and settlement in the floor beneath the tub.

Utility Room

  • The water heater tank should be clean and rust-free.
  • The area around the water softener tank should be clean and dry.
  • Check that all through-the-wall penetrations for fuel lines, ducts, and electrical systems of heating system are well-sealed. All ducts should be clean and dust-free. Inspect the air supply registers in the house for dust accumulation.
  • Filters, supply lines, exterior wall penetrations, vents, duct work and drainage of the cooling system must all be in good working order to avoid moisture problems.

Attic

  • Look for stains or discolorations at all roof penetrations. Chimneys, plumbing vents and skylight wells are common places where moisture may pass through the roof. Any such locations must be inspected for wetness, a musty smell and/or visible signs of mold.
  • Are there areas of the insulation that appear unusually thin?
  • Rust or corrosion around recessed lights are signs of a potential electrical hazard.
Foundations

Model building codes typically require damp-proofing of foundation walls. The damp-proofing shall be applied from the top of the footing to the finished grade. Parging of foundation walls should be damp-proofed in one of the following ways:
  • bituminous coating;
  • 3 pounds per square yard of acrylic modified cement;
  • 1/8-inch coat of surface-bonding cement; or
  • any material permitted for water-proofing.
In summary, moisture can enter a building in a number of different ways. High levels of moisture can cause building defects and health ailments.
If you like to know more about this subject feel free to contact us anytime at 352-437-5300 or email; pascoremodel@gmail.com