Roaches are unsightly in kitchen cabinets as well as other areas of a home, and can carry diseases and be a risk to pets. To get rid of cockroaches in kitchen cabinets, there are some remedies that can be used before contacting a pest control specialist. Steps include cleaning out kitchen cabinets to eliminate possible food sources, identifying and filling cracks where pests may gain entry, address possible water leaks and moisture sources, applying gel baits, and applying diatomaceous earth or boric acid to kill the insects. Learn more about remediating roach infestations in kitchen cabinets.
Causes for water leaking into a basement crawl space include leaking pipes or plumbing fixtures, water from gutters and downspouts, and groundwater seeping through seams or cracks in the foundation. Resolving this issue quickly is important, as standing water can erode a home’s foundation, rot the wooden beams and joists, and create mold and mildew issues. Depending on the root cause of water in a basement crawl space, possible solutions include repairing plumbing leaks, installing a sump pump, adding a vapor barrier, cleaning gutters and diverting downspouts away from exterior basement walls, and fixing grading around the foundation to redirect water away from it. Learn about causes of water in a basement crawl space and remediation tactics.
A residential septic system needs regular maintenance to avoid a system backup and ensure the longevity of the septic tank and septic field. Regular septic tank maintenance includes pumping the tanks every 2-3 years depending on the number of bathrooms and occupants in the home.
There are several options for finding the location of a septic tank. These include inspecting the yard for a large divot or hill, identifying areas in the lawn that are patchy or difficult to grow grass on, using a soil probe to find the septic tank lids, following the main sewer line from the home by tracking the sewer line in the basement, and contacting your local Department of Health or county building department to obtain records or plans submitted for design approval of the septic system. Learn more about ways to identify the location of a home’s septic system.
A concrete septic tank, the most common tank type, can last as long as 40 years. To maximize a septic tank’s lifespan, is it recommended to pump a septic tank every 2 to 3 years. As part of the service call, the septic service company should inspect the complete system for potential issues that could require repairs. Identifying and repairing issues quickly can extend the septic tank and system life. It is also recommended to avoid flushing items down the toilet that could harm the septic system and lead to failure, including hazardous waste, disposable diapers, coffee grounds, paper towels, paint thinner, and other household and personal care items. Learn about septic system lifespan, identifying possible septic tank and septic field failures, and how to extend the life of a septic system.
Basement flooding happens frequently. According to the National Flood Insurance Program, floods are the number one disaster in America. Common causes of basement floods include a burst pipe, leaking foundation, or weather-related event. Flooded basement cleanup requires safety precautions and in many instances, professional help.
Flooded basement cleanup typically costs between $3,000-$10,000, with an average cost of $4,000. The estimated cost includes flood remediation and cleanup for approximately 500 square feet and contains 2 feet of water. If the basement is holding only a couple of inches of clean water, the average cost will be approximately $2,000 since there is less water damage service required.
Floods in basements are typically the result of heavy rainfall or fast snow melt, foundation cracks, broken basement windows or poor draining egress, sewer backups, sump pump malfunctions, water heater failure, drainage system failure, improperly sealed basement walls, burst or leaking pipes, and overflowing gutters or improper downspout locations.
Learn about common causes of basement flooding and important steps to remediate the situation.
Typically, a home warranty will cover repairs to pipes and other plumbing fixtures. A home warranty is a service plan that provides coverage for service, repair, and replacement of systems and appliances listed in the warranty policy. These policies usually include a deductible but will cover the majority of the service or repair cost. Warranties can provide different types of coverage, including major home systems such as HVAC, electrical, and plumbing as well as appliances.
Plumbing is considered a service, so most warranties provide coverage for indoor pipe and other plumbing repairs. Covered repairs usually include leaks or breaks in pipes, fixing or replacing faucets and valves, fixing or replacing built-in motors and pumps, and basket strainers, and clearing of tub, shower, and toilet blockages and stoppages.
Learn about coverage offered by a typical home warranty.
Mold and mildew are common household problems that can cause damage over time if left untreated. This fungus is easy to see, and to ensure that mold and mildew will not come back, you need to find out what caused the mold to grow and address the root cause so that it won’t return. Inspect areas near the mold for active plumbing leaks, condensation on pipes and fittings, basement foundation leaks, high humidity levels, and pre-existing mold infestations.
Mold and mildew infestations can negatively impact the health of those living in the home, especially those with respiratory problems. When mold and mildew are found, it’s important to remove them quickly to prevent harm to the structure and occupants. Common solutions that are used for killing mold include white vinegar, baking soda, bleach, concrobium, and steam. Learn how to remediate mold and prevent it from returning.
While some water heater problems may be fixed with little mechanical knowledge, some issues require professional help. A plumber can assist homeowners in repairing their water heater timely and efficiently, and they can save homeowners money. Hiring a plumber can prevent a homeowner from buying parts for their water heater if the appliance needs to be replaced.
The average cost to repair a water heater is $587, with typical repair costs ranging between $150-$955. Common water heater problems include temperature issues, leaks, and running out of hot water.
When hiring a plumber, make sure the plumber is licensed and is established in your local area, request a quote for the repairs before authorizing work, confirm the plumber has liability insurance and worker’s compensation, and confirm their expertise in water heater repair and replacement.
Learn more about the cost for water heater repair and replacement and considerations before hiring a professional plumber.
Water softener systems can neutralize or eliminate heavy minerals from water reducing the water’s hardness. These systems are available in various configurations based on method of mineral removal and volume of water to be treated. Water softener systems cost between $500-$6,000. Factors that impact the cost of installing a water softener system include the type and capacity of the water softener the system, size of the house or plumbing system, area of the home that will utilize treated water, geographic location, electrical and plumbing requirements, permits, and labor for installation. Keep in mind that the water softener systems will require regular maintenance to perform. Learn about why your home may require a water softener system, different types of water softener systems, and costs for installation.
Nonferrous metals like copper don’t ‘rust’, however, they do eventually oxidize—or corrode. When copper reacts with air it produces copper carbonate, which is the greenish-blue color found on copper as it ages. Copper is easy to clean and it’s possible to protect copper by applying a clear lacquer. However, with decorative copper items, there are reasons you might not want to clear coat them. Learn about what causes copper to oxidize and how it can be prevented.