These home inspection tips show how to protect the siding and foundation of your Los Angeles home. Whether your home is built on a slab or a raised foundation, it comes in contact with the soil at some point. The foundation is obviously in contact with the ground, but all siding materials should have adequate clearance from the ground to preventmoisture penetration, insect access, and siding damage.
Stucco siding should have a minimum 4″ clearance above soil and 2″ above hardscaping. Wood siding should have a minimum 6″ clearance above soil and 2″ above a hardscape surface.The main reason for these requirements is for protection against moisture.
One mistake I often see during a home inspection is a patio slab that has been poured too high against a house wall. If the stucco weep screed is buried, water may become trapped resulting in moisture damage inside the wall cavities. Even if the ground isn’t in contact with the siding, if adequate clearance does not exist, rain will splash up and soak the siding resulting in moisture penetration.
The soil at the perimeter of your home should slope away from the foundation. The surface grade should drop a minimum of 6″ within the first ten feet. The perimeter grading at many of my home inspections has negative slope because of settling along the foundation or improper grading during construction. This condition will allow excessive moisture to penetrate the foundation and shorten its life-span.
Home Inspection Tips- How To Protect The Siding And Foundation Of Your Los Angeles Home:
1. Maintain a good grade slope away from the foundation.
2. Be sure the siding has proper clearance from soil and hardscape areas.
3. Prune all vegetation growing against the exterior of your home.
4. Have rain gutters installed if they are not. Use splash blocks or extensions at the downspouts to carry water away from the foundation.
5. Keep a good coat of paint on wood siding for moisture protection.
6. Tune up your irrigation system so the sprinklers do not spray the house.
7. In some cases where the perimeter drainage is poor, you may have to install a drainage system or improve the one you have.