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Bill Jones, 518-260-2967

6 Steps To Prevent Water In Your Basement

Most of us run dehumidifiers in our basements. This prevents the buildup of moisture, mold and that musty smell we all try to avoid. While the dehumidifier can help to bring down the moisture in the air, its always best to prevent moisture, or at least as much as we can, from ever entering the basement. Here are some basic steps to keep water from your basement. 6 Steps to Prevent Water In Your Basement 1. Keep your gutters clean. When clogged gutters overflow, water can pool around your foundation. Remove any leaves and debris left over from winter, then install leaf guards and downspout extenders to direct water 10 feet from the house. Extending the gutters away from the house will prevent the water from just flowing back into the basement. 2. Change the grade. Make sure surrounding soil is pitched away from the house at a slope of at least 1/4 inch per foot so that water drains toward your yard, not your foundation. Simply add soil, raking it smooth, until the grade is highest at the house’s … Continue reading

Ice Dam Prevention Tips & Fixes (or “the Damn Ice” as we call it up North)

Knowledge of ice dam prevention and fixes should be part of every Northern homeowners toolbox. Icicles may look beautiful but its a sure sign of problems with a house. If you see icing in your roof, you’ll want to take steps to keep the ice from building up (or call your home inspector!). Letting ice dams build up can allow water into your home. Check out these ice damage prevention, tips in Queensbury, Glens Falls, Lake George, Saratoga Springs and Upstate NY. DEALING WITH EXISTING ICE DAMS 1. Remove the ice dam by breaking it free in small chucks. Do NOT use an ax or other sharp tool! You’ll cut through the shingles. Instead, tap lightly with a blunt mallet. This is slow, dangerous work, so hire someone experienced at roofing. Even if you do it safely, the chunks of ice can take pieces of shingle with them. 2. Clear out gutters and downspouts. Again, this is ladder work and an easy way to damage either plastic or metal gutters and spouts. 3. Melt troughs through the ice dam with … Continue reading

The Silent Killer: Why You Need An Upstate NY Radon Inspection!

Radon is becoming a hot topic these days, especially for people that are buying or selling a home. What is radon? It is a colorless, odorless gas that is released as uranium and thorium decay. What are the effects of radon? It is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States with an estimated 21,000 deaths a year. This is second only to smoking. Should you be concerned about radon? Absolutely YES! Should you be afraid of radon? Absolutely NOT! With knowledge comes power. Knowing you have a radon problem is half the battle. Radon is all around us in low levels. We live with it in our world and our bodies have learned to deal with radon in low levels. If you find that your home has high levels of radon, you can then do something about it. It is one of the easier fixes in your home. And while radon mitigation isn’t cheap (average cost of around $1,500), it is a solid, long term fix. Some basic Q&A about radon: How can I tell if I … Continue reading