How Shoveling Snow Can Damage Your Foundation…

Can shoveling snow effect the structural integrity of my home? The answer? Yes. Shoveling snow can actually affect the health of your foundation. All home inspectors in Columbus Ohio shutter when they drive down a road and see the greatest sin of winter snow shoveling. Snow shoveled against a home.

Columbus Ohio Home Inspectors Dog Shovels Snow

Columbus Ohio receives on average 27.5 inches of snow according to Currentresults.com. 10 inches of snow can equal as much as 5 inches of rainfall! Ohio averages 37 inches of rain according to the ODNR. If you shovel snow in a careless fashion and pile it against the side of your home you can be doing real harm to your home.

The snow you pile against your home will melt and when it does it will put an unusual amount of water next to your home at a time of the year when it can do the most damage. When water is absorbed into the ground it can freeze and push against your foundation, this can very easily bow one of your basement walls and cause thousands of dollars of damage.

Many of us live in an urban or suburban environment where shoveling snow against a foundation wall isn’t a realistic possibility. But, many homes in central ohio have driveways that extends along the side of the home. Some of us may even have a plow or snow blower and may be tempted to pile that snow along our home or our neighbors home. Do not give in to this temptation.

Hydrostatic pressure is the pressure that is created by water on a surface. This surface that we are concerned with in central ohio as a home inspector is your basement wall, your foundation wall. Extra water that drains against your basement wall will exert pressure on the wall. If it freezes it will exert even more pressure as the water expands.

You may feel that there is not enough water draining against a foundation to affect it but something as simple as a clogged downspout can leave enough water next to your foundation in Columbus Ohio to move a wall up to the point of critical failure.

As the snow comes down and we all do our best to deal with it, remember one thing, don’t pile snow next to your foundation. That water must go someplace and the last place you want it to go is next to your foundation.