A Wet Basement and The Causes

Are you wearing rain boots to the basement and in need of wet basement repair? If you’re under water or have been mopping up water in your basement, we can help alleviate the aggravation.  We will secure your foundation against more erosion and hydrostatic pressure against basement walls. Wet basements can be a sign of cracks in the foundation. Don’t wait until cracks show up in your basement. Follow these steps to ensure a dry basement and kick those boots off! 

A Wet basement and the Causes—

Grading towards the house can give concern to any homeowner and wreck havoc on the drainage. Some builders don’t take into consideration the flow of water off the roof and away from the foundation. For instance, this February mid-month (2016) we have already had an accumulation of rainfall measuring 3.52 inches. On a roof that covers an area 1500 sq.ft. multiply that number by 0.623 to find the quantity of wet basement repairswater in gallons for a one-inch depth and in a one square foot space.) The gallon total is 3289.44 gallons fallen on the roof since the beginning of February. That much water is falling down and into and around your foundation or out your gutter system. If the ground isn’t sloped correctly, it could be seeping into your crawlspaces or basement. Hence, wearing rain boots in the basement!

Downspouts that are filled with last year’s leaves and debris will certainly hold up the water flow. Bi-annual cleanouts are a must for checking good water flow and protecting your foundation and preventing wet basement repairs. After neglect, your underground water pipes could be clogged or crushed from improper installation. When installing drainage pipes, we assure initial haunching backfill by surrounding the pipes diameter. This provides primary support against lateral pipe deformation from the weight on the surface of the lawn.

We will examine the areas around your house to evaluate where the leakage is coming in and discuss a plan with you.  Be it grading away from the foundation or installing a French drain, we do it all. With the rains like we’ve had lately, many are in line for basement repairs. Call us for a consultation today! 828.774.1590.

Proper Tree Health and Safety

Symptoms and problems trees can have in the tree health evaluations we conduct are dead branches, splitting, weak branch unions, dead and decay, cankers and root problems. In this article, we will discuss the actions we suggest to take for proper tree health and safety.

Tree Health & Options–

If a tree has multiple symptoms, we would advise taking four options.

  • Move items from around the tree that could be damaged if it fell and block off access to this area until the tree can be removed
  • Remove branches that are the highest threat or hazard if the rest of the tree appears strong and healthy
  • Corrective actions can be taken yet leave an option for leaving a portion of the tree for wildlife habitat. The height of the tree can be reduced and major tree health- evaluations-tree workbranches removed.
  • Remove the tree if all else fails. An option would be to leave the tree on the ground (if it must come down) in a woodland area for wildlife to live.

Tree Health Evaluations–

Evaluating trees and the advice of a knowledgeable expert in this profession will save you hundreds of dollars and help preserve the aesthetics and safety of your property and persons. Taking proper measures early on in a young tree’s life will assure you have healthy trees on your property that can add property values, provide wildlife habitat and reduce energy costs by providing shade and exposure to strong winds.

6 Symptoms of an Unhealthy Tree

Before winter sets in and snow is on the ground, it’s a good idea to check for dead, damaged and diseased limbs and branches in your trees. Snow and strong winds can loosen already unstable limbs and branches and create a hazard for your property. We follow ANSI A300 PRUNING STANDARDS in order for your trees to receive the utmost care and remain healthy. Older trees can harbor defects and decay. Visible signs that a tree is in stress or failing is:

Dead branches and limbs

Any branch lodged in a tree of sufficient size or larger than 4 inches in diameter should be brought down methodically to prevent being blown down and hitting personal property or causing injury to people.

 

split bark-tree health-arborist

Bark splitting

Splitting

Splits through the bark and into the wood can cause further injury to the tree and make it susceptible to malady and bacteria. Frost cracks can occur in extreme cold snaps followed by rapid thawing. Other factors like late growth in the fall, high humidity, and nitrogen levels can increase the probability.

Weak branch unions

Unions can occur when two similar in size branches are growing together. In this union the bark is growing between the unions, therefore the union is much weaker and can easily split apart. If these are associated with cracks or decay, removing these branches before they cause injury to humans or property is vital.

Dead and decay

If soft or crumbly wood is evident, the tree or branch is decaying. Often times mushrooms, conks, and brackets on the tree is a warning of advanced rotting. Getting a professional to look at the tree is prudent to its survival and safety to others.mushroom-tree-decay-fungus-tree health

Cankers

Cankers can weaken the stem or branch of a tree where the bark is missing. A wounding or disease can cause cankers. If it encompasses more than half of the circumference of the trunk or branch it could be considered hazardous.

Root Problems

The root system is largely the stability factor of the tree. Root problems can occur if the root system has been disturbed by the change in soil levels around the tree, including paving over the roots or parking under the tree. The compacted soil from heavy vehicles would deprive it of sufficient amounts of oxygen. Symptoms might include branch dieback, dead wood in the crown or a variance in leaf size and color.

These problems and symptoms give an overview of what we look out for when doing a tree evaluation. If you suspect your trees are not in good health, let us examine and give you a proposal to ensure you can keep these living and vital assets as healthy as possible. Call today at 828.774.1590 for your tree health evaluation.

 

Winter Garden Protection

storm winter-damage-evergreensThe weatherman was correct in forecasting a freeze warning this recent weekend and continuing. This means temperatures are likely to get down into the single digits. With that in mind, let’s talk about your plants in the winter garden landscape. Winter weather may play havoc causing winter damage in your garden and we want to give you some tips on how to manage.

Your root hardy perennials in the winter garden should be fine. Foliage should already be killed back by the cold weather thus far and plants are in dormancy until spring. Hardy perennials, shrubs and trees are still in dormancy, which decrease their likelihood of damage due to the reduced sap content in their branches. With our recent rains, we should be in good shape since a little drink from Mother Nature insures against drying out or desiccation. If recent rains haven’t adequately watered your plants and the rain clouds passed you by, then there’s need to be concerned. Thoroughly water your winter container gardens that may have plantings or particular shrubs or trees that get a lot of wind. The freeze plus wind will increase the likelihood of desiccation. Most landscape plants can recover from a brief dip below freezing. When temperatures plummet below 28 degrees F., then cellular damage can take place. On top of that, if your garden suffers wind along with low temperatures, you may not be as lucky. Wind can plummet the feel like temperatures thus your plant will feel the same exposure. Wind damage is another leading cause of desiccation other than lack of watering.

During a seasonal change when plants are waking up from their long winter naps. If you, however, have some marginally zoned plants in your yard, take special actions to prevent loss by covering with fabric, old sheets, frost cloths (except plastic). They can be uncovered as soon as the temperatures rise above 32 degrees F. Small plants can be covered with a bucket or mulch.If you see browning leaves after the freeze, leave it until spring and then remove. The extra coverage will protect the undergrowth from getting hit if another freeze pops in on us.

If you have suffered winter damage, we can help with diagnosis and replace your plants with recommendations for your landscape.

Storm Damage and Cleanup Tips

Storm Damage-tree work-winter

When a storm hits, it’s always unexpected unless you have a direct line to Mother Nature. She can be fast and furious and depending on her mood, leave broken tree limbs and piles of snow behind. We’ve compiled some advice on how to prevent storm damage to your home and garden and keep your family safe.

  1. To protect from flooding rain, make sure your yard slopes away from the house and that gutters are clear and draining properly. Improper drainage can cause foundations to crack and water seepage as a result.
  2. Every inch of rain can equate to ten inches of snow if temperatures are 32 or below. How to safely remove snow without busting the derriere is imperative. Take our advice…apply a de-icer a few hours before it snows and this will help melt accumulations up to 2 inches.
  3. Have on hand an ergonomic S-shaped shaft shovel that is lightweight plastic or aluminum blade coated with a non-stick finish to do the dirty work of shoveling out without hurting your back in the process.
  4. Get a tree-health consultation to make assure dead, damaged and diseased limbs are removed before a winter storm hits and does major damage to your home or family. We follow ANSI A300 Pruning Standards in order for your trees to receive the utmost care and remain healthy.

If you have any questions or would like drainage solutions, snow removal, storm cleanup or a tree health evaluation, call for an appointment today at 828-715-1590 or 774.1590.