5 Missed Or Hidden Home Hazards That Can Put Your Family At Risk

The safety of your home is of vital importance to your well being. Health hazards in the home may seem obvious, but they can go unnoticed and unseen. They can be lurking in your home without your family realizing they exist. This underlines the importance of conducting a home inspection on your home in Vancouver, WA. A home inspection can help to identify home hazard risks and lead you in removing them with the proper professionals who utilize safe practices and modern technology. In this article, we will reveal some of the common hidden home hazards that you may be unaware of and suggest tips for keeping your home safe from home health hazards.

Compromised Electrical Wiring

Mold

Radon Gas

Poor Indoor Air Quality

Water Leaks

Compromised Electrical Wiring

Compromised electrical wiring is wiring that is faulty due to fraying, chafing, pinching, melting of the protective sheathing, long standing water, or chewing of the wire by rats, mice, squirrels, and other varmints. If faulty wiring goes unnoticed or ignored, they can pose a significant danger to the safety of those living in the home, making the home vulnerable to fire and its inhabitants vulnerable to smoke inhalation or to electrocution.

If a home’s wiring was installed improperly, or not according to code, it can lead to overloaded electrical circuits, which can lead to home fires. If you have any work done on your home that involves the home’s electrical wiring, it is of essential importance to have it done by a licensed and experienced electrician.

Heat is another source which, when wire is exposed to it, can lead to faulty wiring. Heat can render the protective sheathing to a brittle state, which can lead to the breaking of the sheathing if the wiring is subject to vibration or other movements. Wire sheathing which is frayed, broken, chafed, or otherwise compromised, can be an especially dangerous source of short circuiting that can lead to a home fire.

Electrical wiring with live voltage can cause severe burns, muscle spasms, or even heart attack, if the wire is exposed through the sheathing and someone in the home comes into contact with it. The dangers of electrocution are real. A good home maintenance protocol is to check a home’s wiring regularly, and have it replaced if it is damaged, or have an electrical outlet repaired if it can be repaired rather than being replaced.

Mold

Mold can pose a serious hidden health hazard that can lead to several health issues. If someone has allergies, asthma, or a compromised immune system, they can be especially vulnerable to the health hazards associated with mold. Mold can grow, hidden, on many surfaces including floors, walls and ceilings. Warm, humid locations are ideal for mold to grow in. Mold spores can be airborne, so they can be inhaled, which is why they can be especially detrimental to people with respiratory complications.

Slopeside Home Inspections might find mold in your house in Vancouver, Washington during a home inspection that includes mold sampling. They can use sophisticated equipment to discover unseen mold, look for the mold symptoms of discoloration and probe for the mold symptoms of musty smells.

Coughing, wheezing, clogged nasal passages, eye irritations, and skin rashes can all be symptoms of mold exposure. The side effects of exposure to mold can affect some people more than others, mainly those who are already suffering from compromised immune systems or other respiratory conditions; or, exposure can lead to infections, respiratory problems, or allergic responses. If you find mold in your home, you can contact us to inspect the entire home to reveal other, possible hidden locations of mold.

Decreasing moisture in the home is key to reducing the chances of mold growth. Preventing mold growth in your home can help to prevent the health issues associated with mold growth. Common practices and maintenance a homeowner can do to reduce the chances of mold growing in the home include, using exhaust fans in kitchens, bathrooms and laundry rooms, keeping the home well ventilated to reduce moisture buildup, and repairing water leaks and removing any water damage that result from water leaks.

Radon Gas

Radon gas can be a significant health risk for homeowners because it is an invisible, odorless, and tasteless gas. Radon gas is a natural gas which comes from uranium in rocks and it can be in the soil around or underneath a house. Radon gas can seep into homes through fractures in a foundation, through foundation vents, through gaps surrounding pipes or wires passing through walls or foundations. Radon gas poses a grave health hazard because estimates are believed to be as high as nearly 7% of homes in the U.S. with high levels of radon gas.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), radon gas is the second most common contributing cause to lung cancer in the U.S., with nearly 21,000 people dying each year. Radon can increase the risk of lung cancer in cigarette smokers and former smokers.

You can help prevent the possibility of radon gas harming your family with a radon test, in Vancouver Washington, that can detect the presence of the gas, allowing you to take action to reduce or remove the source of the gas. A home inspection can include radon testing with a radon detector to measure the radon levels in a home. A certified home inspector can properly test for radon and a professional contractor with radon mitigation training can install a radon mitigation system which can reduce the radon levels in your home, if a test reveals high levels of the gas.

Poor Indoor Air Quality

The indoor air of a home can be compromised by several sources, including radon gas, mold, mildew, pet dander, tobacco smoke, poorly ventilated cooking appliances, wood stoves, and household cleaners. These sources can affect the health of those living in or visiting a home and some of the sources can not be detected by the eye. Cancer, respiratory difficulties, and allergic reactions can all be caused by poor indoor air quality.

As with mold and radon gas, pet dander, smoke from wood stoves or poorly ventilated cooking appliances, and household cleaning products can contribute to the aggravation of existing medical difficulties such as allergies and asthma, or they can outright cause health conditions which can make breathing difficult.

Cleaning a cooking stove should always be carried out with all the necessary precautions for good ventilation. If your home utilizes natural gas ranges, gas heating, or propane wood stoves, it is of importance to routinely check connections and maintain them according to optimal maintenance schedules to avoid possible exposure to carbon monoxide leaks.

Water Leaks

Water leaks can lead to mold growth, but they can also cause other home hazards such as damage to electrical wiring, electrical devices, and contribution to wood decay. Water leaks can go unseen in hidden. Leaks can occur anywhere water pipes or water drainage pipes pass through walls, inside of walls, in basements, or under homes. Water leaks can also occur in attics or walls due to a leak in the roof.

If a homeowner discovers a water leak in their home, it is important to get it fixed as soon as is possible so any damage from water can be kept at a minimum. If water leaks go unchecked for a period of time, they can cause more damage to flooring and drywall board than if caught and repaired quickly. Minor leaks may be able to be repaired by the homeowner; however, some leaks will require the expertise of a professional contractor or plumber.

If you schedule a home inspection in Vancouver, Washington with Slopeside Home Inspections, Andrew Tewson can uncover water leaks by searching for the symptoms of water leaks and their tell tale signs of damage, such as warped or buckled flooring, musty odors, crumbling drywall, and stains on ceilings or walls.

Water leaks can cause damage that is very expensive to repair and can lead to mold growth within 48 hours or less. If you suspect a water leak has caused damage, do not hesitate to schedule a home inspection with Slopeside Home Inspections.

Schedule a home inspection with Slopeside Home Inspections today! Don’t wait until it is too late. Help to ensure the safety of your home and your family with regular home maintenance, including a regularly scheduled home inspection.