Five Major Basement Problems to Avoid, Part 2

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basement problems to avoid

Read part two of the two part series of five basement problems to avoid.  Today, we will be talking about foundation cracks, weird smells, and pests.  Did you miss part 1?  See it here. 

Foundation Cracks

Cracks in the basement can be a sign of an unstable foundation. A vertical crack means that the ground under the foundation has shifted, while a lateral crack may mean there is no support in the exterior areas, which can make a wall eventually buckle. The problem with these cracks is that they not only mar the appearance of your walls but may also allow for water damage and pests to enter. The larger the crack, the more serious the problem can be. If you are just noticing new cracks and they are still small, make a note of their size, and then monitor them for a while to see if they are getting larger and how quickly they are progressing.

Weird Smells

Mold can cause a weird smell. A faulty heating system can also cause a weird smell or one that smells like burning wires. There are dozens of things that can cause smells in your basement. Because it is unlikely to have a ventilation system or windows, the typical basement tends to end up with stagnant air. Even stagnant air itself can cause less than pleasant smells.

Unfortunately, trying to use air fresheners, candles, and other items can make the problem even worse. It is more important to find the source of the smell, eliminate it, and then work to prevent it from happening again.


The less you use the basement, the more likely pests are to move in and set up their new homes. Termites are the worst of these potential problems because they can quickly destroy walls and structures and can make the house unsafe. Other pests, like spiders, ants, roaches, and rodents can also set up nests in the basement and cause damage. Mice are prone to chewing holes through walls, furniture, and wires and can cause fires. Ants will make trails from the basement to the kitchen in search of food sources. Roaches spread germs and diseases as they scurry from here to there. They typically come out at night and can breed to infestation numbers in a very short period of time.

Once you notice the signs of these problems, it is important that you find them, eliminate them, and then take preventative steps to keep them from ever coming back.

This is a guest post by Goldleaf Partners!

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