What You Need to Fix to Make an Older Building Safe

January 31, 2022

An older building has architectural charm that can’t be matched by newer construction. At the same time, however, it may need some renovation before it’s perfectly suited for your needs. Over time, a building can suffer damage or deterioration. The first consideration should be making the building safe, so remember to check for these fixes!

Remove Water-Damaged Parts

Water damage is more than a cosmetic issue. Water leaks and seepages can damage wood, causing it to weaken. From the roof to the foundation, the structure of the building can be in jeopardy if beams, framing, or supports have sustained water damage. Any water-damaged parts will need to be replaced. Also inspect the house for other harmful effects of water leaks, such as mold, which can cause harm to your health. According to Alldry USA, mold is often found under carpet or other flooring, behind appliances, and in ceiling tiles. For an extensive mold problem, a professional clean-up may be needed.

Electrical System

According to Rabe Hardware, outdated electrical systems can pose dangers for your building. Electrical problems are one of the major causes of building fires. Fires can start when the wires are worn or damaged. Older homes may also use wires with inadequate insulation. There is also the danger of electrical shock if wires are not grounded properly. In upgrading the building’s electrical system, you may need to replace wires, but you also may need to add more circuits. With today’s technology needs, people are using much more energy than in the past, so it’s important to check that your current wiring is up for the task.

Update the Plumbing

The biggest danger in old plumbing systems is the use of pipes containing lead, which was a common practice up until the 1950s. Lead can cause poisoning, especially in children. According to Chronomite, another problem material is polybutylene, a resin used through the 1990s. This material reacts with chlorine in city water and causes the pipes to break or crack. Another problem is clogged drainage, which can cause sewer backups. If the building has a septic system, make sure it’s up to date and adequate for your usage. Finally, you’ll want to change out any old toilets, faucets, and connections.

An older building can be restored and refreshed, but first you need to make it safe. Make a thorough inspection of the building’s structure and systems, looking for signs of damage and outdated materials. Once these are replaced and repaired, you can apply the finishing touches.

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