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Watch for house damage in high heat

We’ve already weathered several heat advisories this summer, and now we’re under the “heat dome” that’s covering much of the Midwest. While we’re baking under this heat, it’s important to keep an eye on your house and watch for damage.

Watch for heat damage to your houseRoof damage: Excess heat moving through the roof from the attic below can drastically shorten the life of a shingled roof. The remedy is adequate venting, according to Becky Stager of the Home Repair Resource Center.

“You can extend the life of your existing roof by installing a power vent to your attic, or even a thermostatically-controlled window fan to move hot air out,” she says. This can also reduce your energy costs and the stress on your air conditioner.

Air conditioner overload: When temperatures and/or the heat index reaches 100 degrees, it puts extra stress on your air conditioner. Clear the Air Cooling & Heating in Houston, TX has some suggestions on how to keep your A/C working under tough conditions:

  • Check your filters. Clean or replace them if they’re dirty.
  • Turn the thermostat up a couple of degrees.
  • Don’t cool what you don’t use. Close doors and vents in little-used areas.
  • Keep the shades drawn or curtains closed the sunny side of the house.
  • Avoid running heat-generating appliances during the day. Instead of running the dry cycle on the dishwasher, open the door and let dishes air dry. Do laundry in the evenings.

Foundation settlement: Heat and dry weather can dry up the soil around your foundation, causing it to pull away. As a result, your foundation can shift and crack.

According to Jim Laven on Angie’s List, “During periods of prolonged dryness, the soil surrounding your home shrinks away, causing foundation issues that, if not addressed, can grow into even bigger problems over time.”

Foundation settling damage begins with cracks in basement walls that you might not notice, especially if you have a finished basement. Eventually, upstairs drywall will begin to crack, and windows and doors will no longer open and close easily, Laven says.

When it does finally rain, your house could flood more easily. “It may seem strange that foundation problems caused by drought can lead to flooding, but it actually makes a lot of sense,” he says. “When your foundation settles and cracks form, your home becomes vulnerable to anything that can enter through those cracks, including water.”

Insect invasion: Pests can also enter your home more easily through foundation cracks. If you see signs of mice, insects, spiders or other unwelcome guests, contact Pest Solutions 365 to get them out of your home.

If you see signs of possible problems but aren’t sure if repairs are needed, call AmeriSpec at 402-393-3696 in Omaha or 402-483-2010 in Lincoln. We can help you evaluate the damage.

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