Residential repairs can be extremely costly, which is why before things lead to a major house foundation repair, it’s important to make sure you protect that part of your home. Here are some foundation maintenance tips that can help you:
1. Monitor Cracks
Never ignore the cracks on your floors because it may indicate that your house’s foundation needs attention. Once you’ve spotted these cracks, it’s crucial for you to monitor them closely and note if there’s a significant change in the following days.
You should also take note if the cracks widen when it was exposed to rain or extreme temperatures. If as days go by, the cracks increase in length, become wider, and even extend to the walls, then it’s better to call a house foundation repair expert to look at it.
Another thing you should watch out for is foundation cracks. Unlike common cracks on the floor, they can’t be spotted that easily and you have to check them from the basement or crawlspace.
They can be caused by a lot of factors like extreme heat, earthquakes, too dry or wet soil, and slab leaks. Slab leaks are especially tricky since they’re hardly noticeable. They’re caused by plumbing problems wherein a pipe is damaged or improperly installed.
A prolonged slab leak can erode the soil in which your foundation is sitting on. And when it does, it causes the foundation to shift. Eventually, the house or at least a portion of it eventually collapses.
2. Make Sure Your Property Is Correctly Sloped
A good way to avoid overwatering the soil around your house is by making sure that your foundation is on a proper slope. This way, the water drains away instead of seeping deep into the soil. If in case, your house isn’t sloped properly, installing a moisture barrier around your property is a great way to keep the water at bay.
3. Don’t Plant Large Trees Closely to Your House
Plants and trees definitely enhance the appearance of one’s home. But there are also cases where they can be a problem by ruining your foundation. Trees, massive trees, also need to “drink” a massive amount of water for it to grow.
When you plant a huge tree close to your home, its tree roots can compete with the soil around your house’s foundation for water. And since you can’t really control how much water the tree can intake, it can really dry up the soil in which your house is built upon. Too much dry soil is just as bad as too much wet soil. It can do just as much damage to your house’s foundation.
Turn to A+ Environmental, Inc.
At A+ Environmental, Inc., we do our best to help homeowners protect the foundation of their homes. So, for house foundation repairs, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team. Give us a call today.
When thinking of a garden, the first image that would pop to one’s mind is a picture of beautiful flowers and nicely trimmed bushes. But maintaining a garden isn’t that easy, and it takes a lot of effort to keep it neat and pretty.
Not being able to tend to your garden for a day or two shouldn’t be a big deal. But what if you’ve been gone for a month? Or you had to stay in another location for at least a year? Chances are, by the time you get back, your garden had already turned into a full-blown jungle.
Before you start putting on your gardening gloves and bringing your lawnmower to life, check out these five helpful garden restoration tips that can help you save time and money:
1. Observe your garden
If you’ve been gone some time, there may be plants growing in your garden that weren’t there before. Take time off to scan them, then make a list of which ones you’d like to keep.
2. Wear proper gardening clothes
Once you’ve decided which flowers or plants you like to keep, now’s the time to get your hands “dirty.” Take out the weeds or any greenery that you think is a nuisance to your garden.
Never wander an overgrown garden without wearing proper clothing. Boots, long-sleeved shirts, and gloves can save you from touching or getting in contact with itch-inducing or poisonous plants that may have sprouted in your garden.
3. Groom your plants and flowers
Overgrown shrubs would need some trimming to get them back to shape. Meanwhile, some plants need pruning for them to grow at a steady pace and properly receive nutrients. Additionally, the grass bed, which probably grew out of hand, would need to be mowed.
4. Consider upgrading your garden
If you want to give your garden a fresh new look, buying new flowers and plants would be a great start. Or you can also choose to add a few decorative pieces, such as white landscape rocks or gnomes figurines. Just make sure to stick to your budget so that you can avoid overspending.
5. Take your time
All of this couldn’t be done in a day, so there’s no need to rush. It’s better to mark a ‘garden” day or two on your calendar so you’d have a more well-planned routine.
Need Help With Your Garden Restoration? Turn to A+ Environmental, Inc.
At A+ Environmental, Inc., we take on residential and commercial landscaping services. If you need professional help restoring your garden or landscape, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our team.
A beautiful and functional landscape can be an asset to your business. Creating an enjoyable outer space attracts more customers to your establishment and encourages them to stay longer. But if your landscaping is not well-maintained, it can turn prospective clients away. If that happens, check out these commercial landscape restoration tips to bring back the beauty of your lawn.
Keep the grass green and the flowers blooming.
Get rid of dry patches on your lawn by replacing them with healthy grass, plants, or flowers. When selecting plants and flowers for the lawn, make sure that the colors and textures match the architectural style of your building. This will create a design harmony that will connect the establishment with the landscape in front of it.
Direct the flow of traffic to the main entrance of the building.
From a business standpoint, you will want to direct people to the main entrance of the building. You need to make it obvious and inviting; avoid blocking it with enormous trees or shrubs. Additionally, creating brick walkways that lead to the main entrance can help your customers easily access your business. Bright and colorful landscape elements, such as flowers, shrubs, and low plants, can line these paths and create additional visual appeal for your landscape.
Create a focal point in your landscape design.
Create a “focal point” in your design. It can be a monument, statue, or even the entrance of your building. This visual element makes the landscape more interesting and captures the attention of the people passing by. And then, design the rest of the scenery to draw focus on that point. If you need help in doing so, commercial landscape restoration services are just a call away.
Ensure proper care and regular maintenance.
Once every element is in place, you just need to ensure regular maintenance to keep the landscape neat and beautiful. Over time, the plants and other visual elements will change, and they can look overgrown and overwhelming.
Get in touch with us at A+ Environmental, Inc for residential and commercial landscaping services. You can also contact us today to learn more about creating beautiful landscapes!
Waterproofing your basement will preserve the strength of your home’s foundation and overall structural integrity. It will keep your basement clean and dry, preventing leaks or mold accumulation. To have your basement waterproofed, you’ll need a reputable waterproofing contractor in Madison, WI.
To help you select the right waterproofing company, you should know more about them and their work. Here are some important questions you should ask:
How long have you been in business?
The longer the company has been in business, the more experience they have in handling waterproofing concerns. This means they have the level of skills and expertise that you need to protect your home. Additionally, they have most likely encountered the problem you are facing, so they can provide foolproof solutions.
Are you licensed and insured?
This is one of the most important questions you should ask a waterproofing company. Basement waterproofing may require a building permit for the contractor to operate. Also, you need to ensure that they have workers’ compensation and liability insurance. These safety precautions will protect you financially in case an accident happens on the job.
What is the best solution to the problem?
The waterproofing company will recommend various ways to solve your water problem at home. You must ask about all the components of their proposed solution—the materials to be used, how long it will take, and why they think it’s the best resolution. This will ensure that their waterproofing recommendation will prevent future problems.
Do you offer warranties?
If they have warranties, you need to know what they cover—materials, labor, or both. You should also ask how long they are valid and if they are transferable. The best offer is a lifetime transferable warranty, which can be passed to the next owner of your home.
Can I see the reviews of your previous customers?
A reputable basement waterproofing company should be able to provide a long list of satisfied customers. You can also check review websites to see if the company is recommended. Be on the lookout for both positive and negative comments.
Make an Informed Decision
Asking the right questions will help you select the best company to repair your water problem. Make sure your chosen waterproofing contractor in Madison, WI will solve your problem for good.
At A+ Environmental, Inc., we have more than 30 years of professional experience in the waterproofing industry. Turn to us for all your basement waterproofing needs! Contact us today for more information about our services.
Water accumulates in basements for several reasons, such as rain- or groundwater seepage via cracks. It can also be due to condensation from pipes that pass through the area. To prevent leaks and their detrimental consequences, like mold growth and a weakened foundation, you must have your basement waterproofed.
There are many useful basement waterproofing tips you can use to get started on the project. Read on to learn more about them.
Clean and Secure Your Gutter System
The purpose of gutters and downspouts is to direct the flow of rainwater away from your home. If they get clogged or damaged, water might pool in them, leak into parts of your roof, or find its way down to your basement. To prevent this from happening, make sure to regularly clean and inspect your gutter system.
Extend Your Downspout
You should have your downspouts extended to at least four feet away from your home. This placement of the downspouts will further ensure that no water will be pooling near your foundation—it’ll all be transported away into the yard or, perhaps, an underground well.
Check for Plumbing Issues
Problems in your home’s plumbing system are another threat to the dryness of your basement. Leaks from broken pipes upstairs or within walls can be difficult to diagnose and can cause water to flow down and accumulate in your basement. Make sure to have a professional inspect your house’s pipes and fixtures.
Dehumidify the Air in Your Basement
Having a quality dehumidifier in your basement can significantly help control moisture and humidity levels in it. Make sure to maintain the appliance by having it periodically inspected and cleaned.
Slope the Soil Away From Your Foundation
Examine the soil surrounding your house. Does it slope away from the foundation? If not, then you better have it regraded as soon as possible. This will help channel the flow of water on the ground away from your foundation and basement.
Apply Waterproof Coatings
For further protection against moisture and water seepage, use waterproofing products for your basement’s interior walls. There are a variety of them available on the market, from simple waterproof paint to concrete sealers.
Keeping your basement clean and dry is important in maintaining the strength of your foundation and, in general, your home’s structural integrity. For all your professional basement waterproofing needs and concerns, turn to A+ Environmental, Inc. in Madison, WI. Get in touch with us to learn more.
Basement Waterproofing Methods
One method to properly maintain your foundation is to have your basement waterproofed. By sealing the area against water seepage, you secure your house from the consequences of a leaky basement, such as mold and mildew growth and a weakened foundation.
The process for basement waterproofing in Madison can be done in three ways: from the inside, the outside, and with drainage systems. Read on to learn more about them.
If your basement’s leakage problem is minor and was only recently identified, this method is the usual solution. Cracks and holes in the basement are sealed with special materials such as hydraulic cement. The cement will expand within the fissure, fully covering it and creating a leakproof seal.
When the cracks have been effectively sealed, a waterproof coating is then applied to the basement’s walls and floors. Sealing the pores helps block moisture and prevent condensation.
Interior basement waterproofing may also involve installing a floor drainage system that’s within the room’s perimeters. This is done by digging a trench along the basement walls and filling it with gravel and perforated drain tile. A sump pit is then placed for collecting water. Finally, concrete is poured into the trench to seal it.
Water primarily enters from the outside, which makes exterior waterproofing an excellent and effective system of preventing water from even finding its way into your basement. This method usually involves the excavation of the soil around your home’s foundation. Afterward, a drain tile is installed at the base. Waterproof sealant is then applied to the exterior walls.
In the context of blocking water from the outside, it is also important to mention gutter systems. Properly installed gutters and downspouts, especially if with extensions, do a good job of directing rainwater away from your home’s foundation. Make sure to regularly clean your gutter system to avoid damage or clogging.
In keeping your basement dry and free of water, having a properly working drainage system in your home is essential. There are various drainage systems available—you just have to find the one that fits your house and the land surrounding it.
If you’re unsure about which method to choose for your home, you can always consult a waterproofing professional. For all your concerns regarding basement waterproofing in Madison, turn to A+ Environmental, Inc. Contact us today to learn more.
Water seepage in your basement is a situation you don’t want. A damp basement can lead to a lot of problems, such as the growth of mold, mildew, and many harmful bacteria.
A leaky basement calls for a waterproofing job. If it’s your first time to seek basement leak repair in Madison, WI, you should know what to expect from such a service. Read on to learn more.
Prior to the actual waterproofing work, expect an initial visit from the waterproofing contractor. They’ll come and assess your basement to give you a proper evaluation and cost estimate. They’ll also figure out the project scope and level of expertise needed for the job.
If you have conducted an initial inspection of your basement, it would be helpful to relay the information you’ve gathered to the contractor and work together in coming up with the best procedure. This will ensure that you’re on the same page regarding the basement’s condition and the waterproofing service to be done.
While the process may vary depending on the particular basement’s issues, these are the usual steps undertaken during a basement waterproofing service:
Breaking the Concrete
This first step is important to make sure that the interior basement drainage system is designed properly. The concrete around the edge of the basement is broken, which will create a shallow ditch surrounding the interior walls. Then, they will dig through the ditch to make a deeper crevice where a corrugated pipe will be placed.
Covering the Crevice
After securing the corrugated pipe, the crevice will then be covered. Loose gravel will make up the first layer. This will be followed by a layer of new concrete to bring the area back to ground level—the same as the rest of the basement.
Installing a Sump Pump
Sump pumps regulate water drainage. When the water rises to a specific level, the pump turns on automatically to channel the water through the new pipes. These then direct the water away from your basement and to an external drainage system safely.
Installing a Vinyl Wall Cove Base
A vinyl cove base or plate is installed to cover the joints where the wall and floor meet, sealing them against water penetration. This will ensure that the basement’s interior is untouched.
Trust a Waterproofing Pro
A delicate job like basement waterproofing should only be entrusted to a skilled and professional contractor so that your expectations are properly met. If you’re looking to get quality basement leak repair in Madison, WI, turn to A+ Environmental, Inc. Contact us today to learn more.
Glass block windows, first used during the 1900s, are making a comeback. This design element is favored for its thickness and unique, attractive look that no other type of window has. Popularly used in bathrooms and foundation walls, they can now be seen in living rooms and bedrooms.
If you’re considering installing glass block windows on your property, it's a good idea to inform yourself first of what they have (and don’t have) in store for you. Read on to learn about the pros and cons of glass block windows.
Aside from their visual appeal, glass block windows have several other benefits. Here are some of them:
More than simply allowing natural light into your space, glass block windows provide great thermal insulation values similar to double-pane windows. But since they are impenetrable and securely held in place by mortar, they prevent air from getting in, blocking drafts and dust and reducing noise from outdoors.
Given their unique pattern, glass block windows ensure your privacy. For example, if you use them in your bathroom, you wouldn’t have to worry about being seen from the outside. You also get the most out of natural light without compromising privacy.
Glass block windows require little to no maintenance. Pressure washing is enough to keep them in optimal condition. You also don’t need to worry about dirt buildup as these windows have no edges where dust or debris can accumulate.
Green Building Credits
Having glass block windows can qualify your home as LEED- (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) and Energy Star-certified. These programs affirm the energy efficiency and environmental sustainability of properties. This can attract buyers if you ever plan to put your home for sale.
Like most architectural elements, glass block windows also have their share of disadvantages. Here are some examples:
No Natural Ventilation
Because glass block windows are stationary and sealed in place, they don’t allow air to come in. You don’t have the option of opening them to let fumes out or fresh air in. You’ll have to rely on an air conditioner or other similar systems for indoor ventilation.
Glass block windows are much heavier than other glass or window options. They need an especially sturdy foundation, which can limit the areas where they can be used in your property. They can also be tough to construct, and their installation may require increased professional support.
Now that you’re presented with the pros and cons of glass block windows, you can properly contemplate getting them installed in your home. For your glass block window concerns, turn to A+ Environmental, Inc. in Madison, WI. Contact us today to learn more.
Ensuring your basement is free of water is important in maintaining the overall condition of your home. And in doing so, you’ll need the help of a basement waterproofing professional.
Careful consideration should be taken in choosing a contractor. You want to make sure they’re capable of providing you with only the best waterproofing services for your basement. In this blog, learn about the qualities of a trusted basement waterproofing contractor.
Years of Professional Experience
Basement waterproofing is no easy job, and still being in business after decades shows the hard work they put into what they do. It proves their reliability and credibility. Look into their work history through the years and see for yourself how capable your contractor is in securing basements against water.
Reliable Skills and Knowledge
You want to hire a contractor who can take one scan of your wet basement and pinpoint the problem. However complicated or specific the issue may be, they will know how to address it.
In basement waterproofing, mistakes can be made, such as disregarding the surrounding soil or sealing cold joints. One of the easiest ways to know if a contractor knows the craft is to see what others have to say about their work. Having many positive reviews speaks volumes about what they can do.
A trusted basement waterproofing specialist will offer a warranty for their service. This guarantees the quality of the work and the materials used in addressing your leaky basement issues.
Smooth and Open Communication
Trusted basement waterproofing pros prioritize their customers’ peace of mind. They will politely and patiently answer any questions you have. They’ll ensure that you’re up to date with everything and that you understand every bit of what’s going on in waterproofing your basement.
A reliable contractor will also be honest with you about any issues that may be encountered as the project progresses. Working closely with the customer in effectively securing basements against intruding water is always the goal.
Entrust Your Basement to a Trusted Contractor
Remember to hire professionals who really know basements to ensure the prevention of disasters brought about by basement leaks in the future. For a truly reliable basement waterproofing company, turn to A+ Environmental, Inc. in Madison, WI. Contact us today for more information.
The winter season is an amazing time to relax, curl up in bed, read a book by the roaring fire, and bond with the family. However, forgetting to prepare your basement for the cold weather can easily put a damper on your holiday break. Waterproofing basement walls and window wells in time for winter can solve various issues including:
Melted Snow Seeping Into Your Basement
While the weather outside is freezing, the temperature in your basement is warm enough to melt snow and frozen soil. As such, moisture buildup is created on your basement walls. When this happens, water, mold, and mildew damage can occur in your basement. This is why consulting experts who understand how to waterproof your basement walls, floor, and window wells effectively should be your top priority.
If the ground surrounding your foundation is sloping toward your home, you are bound to find your basement flooded because of water runoff. Aside from waterproofing your basement, another way to fix this problem is by ensuring that your yard is graded properly. A landscaping company can help you ensure that the slope of the ground near your basement guides water away from your foundation wall.
Larger Cracks in Your Basement Wall
Freezing temperatures cause the ground to accumulate moisture. When soil freezes, frost heaves start to push against your foundation wall. This can make small foundation cracks grow larger, imposing a greater risk of further structural damage to your property. To prevent this from happening, seeking assistance from basement waterproofing specialists is the best course of action.
Water Seeping Into Window Wells
Windows provide your basement with much-needed ventilation. However, they can also let water runoff in if not properly sealed. Ensuring that your window wells can prevent water from leaking into your basement requires the expertise of professionals. Luckily, finding a team of experts who can help you meet your basement waterproofing needs is easy in Madison, WI.
Winterize Your Basement Today
At A+ Environmental, Inc., we put to work every resource available to help you prepare your basement for the cold weather. Backed by our extensive expertise in waterproofing basement walls, window wells, and floors, we have what it takes to deliver satisfactory results. Learn more by getting in touch with us.
A+ Environmental, Inc are basement waterproofing, foundation repair and structural experts serving Wisconsin.