Watch Out for the Heat: Here’s How It Can Damage Your Home

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high temperature

Summer is about fun until a heatwave hits. In places like Arizona, daytime temperatures can soar up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Worse, the season isn’t over yet.

There’s no doubt that excessive heat is dangerous to human health. On average, about 600 people die from heat-related illnesses annually. But it can be just as devastating for the house too.

Here’s how too much sun can damage the house:

1. Loose Foundation

One of the biggest effects of a heatwave is on the foundation. Picture the foundation as a pole in the middle of a mud cake. The solidity of the surrounding cake allows it to stand firm, but its cakeness is due to the high moisture content.

Now imagine applying heat to the mud cake. What happens? As the heat intensifies, the cake suddenly becomes dry because it begins to lose moisture quickly.

The same thing can happen to the soil that supports the foundations. It can crack or break the more the moisture disappears. It then makes the foundations vulnerable to becoming loose.

In some places, it may take a while before the effects of these changes can be significant. However, the same could not be said for those who live in areas with clay soil.

Fortunately, the solution is both simple and practical: add more moisture. One option is to install a water sprinkler system close to the foundations and turn it on in the summer.

2. Gates

Many homeowners may notice two things on their gate right after summer. First, they may find that they cannot close the door anymore as it seems bigger than the gateway. This may happen for two reasons:

  • The heat forces the metal to expand.
  • The posts might have already moved because of the changes in the condition of the soil. This is similar to what happens to foundations during a heatwave.

black gate

Second, metal gates may begin to lose their luster and color since the heat can cause the paint to chip or crack. They may appear much older than they actually are.

Water sprinklers can still work here to ensure that the soil around the metal gates won’t crack and become loose. However, homeowners may need to see to it that the water doesn’t touch the actual metal to prevent the risk of corrosion.

As for the weathering of the metal gates, property owners can consider applying metal powder coating, which adds more protection to the material. They can also opt for sandblasting if they want to repaint the gate. Sandblasting helps remove any traces of paint quickly.

3. Roofing

Summer heat is particularly harmful to one’s roof, especially since it comes in direct contact with it. If the roof is dark, it will absorb more heat, so the temperature will likely be higher than the actual.

The problem aggravates when the roof and the attic don’t have excellent ventilation. At this point, the attic now functions like a dome that prevents heat inside from leaving.

This transforms the house into a figurative oven—it will be extremely hot and uncomfortable. It can potentially increase cooling costs as homeowners have no choice but to turn their air-conditioning units in full blast.

Despite the heat, moisture can still build up. When it condenses, the moisture level can increase the risk of rotting of wood around the roof. Cosmetically, like gates, roofs can also lose their luster and color when exposed to too much heat for a long time.

Sadly, getting a roof repaired or replaced around this time may not be ideal. Proper roofing installation requires the right temperature, which is from 70 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. A heatwave is also dangerous for roofers who will be prone to heatstroke.

The best time to prepare the roof for the intense heat is before the season enters. In fact, homeowners may need to have their roofing checked immediately after winter to ensure there are no ice dams or accumulating water. One may also explore using white roofs.

4. Paint

The effect of heat may be more pronounced for those who are repainting their house. When painting the exteriors, they may notice that the paint will dry up too quickly, leaving bubbles. Paint will also crack and lose its color a lot faster.

The interior paint is not immune to the impact of heat either because of humidity. During summer, the amount of moisture in the air is high, which also raises humidity. The effect is the opposite of the exterior paint: it may take a lot longer for the paint to dry.

During summer, homeowners should prepare themselves and their properties to ensure the different parts of the house can sustain the harshness of the season.

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