When a building is being constructed or renovated, mistakes can be made and defects in the structure are created. Contractors and developers may rush a project or make poor building material substitutions to save money. Over time, the construction mistakes can lead to serious structural damage and costly repairs. Luckily, many construction defects can be fixed with less expensive preemptive work.
Make sure you understand some of the most common construction defects and what you can do to fix them. Here are some of the most prevalent building issues that you should keep an eye out for.
Facade leaks are the No. 1 most common construction defect, according to New York real estate advice website Brick Underground. Because facades are among the most complex architectural elements to design and build, they're also among the most likely to be constructed incorrectly.
"As architects get more and more creative and unique with their designs, the likelihood of having window and exterior facade problems becomes far greater," real estate attorney Braverman Greenspun, who works on construction defects, told Brick Underground. "… All you need is for a few of these pieces to fail because the piece itself is defective or improperly installed, and you'll have a serious water infiltration issue which is often difficult to identify and repair."
When a facade is built incorrectly, often it leads to water leaking into the building. This can cause mold, rust, structural issues and property damage. Talk to Clean and Polish Building Solutions about caulking and sealing potential substrate gaps in the facade. Once it's watertight, Clean and Polish can also help your building's facade stay clean and look welcoming.
Similar to facades, windows can be improperly installed or put in with the wrong materials. This can lead to gaps and leaks around the window.
"Clean and Polish can help seal these window defects."
Not only can water leak in through here causing expensive damage, but it can also hurt your building's envelope. Hot air in the winter and cool air in the summer will pour out of these leaks around the window, creating reduced tenant comfort and higher energy bills.
Clean and Polish can help seal these window defects as well as install window film that can provide additional energy-saving help by reducing the impact of UV light in the building.
Roofs are rarely installed incorrectly, but aspects of the roof commonly have defects. Whether this leads to ice dams in the winter or leaks right away, these mistakes can quickly become a major problem. Water buildup and leaks can create greater structural damage to the building and eventually even a full roof collapse is possible.
Have your roof inspected for construction irregularities and potential leaks. Keep the roof and areas clean to eliminate water buildup, especially during the winter.
"Brick or masonry defects can also create stains on the sides of your buildings or nearby windows."
Cracked brick or concrete
In addition to facade issues, cracked bricks, concrete or other masonry can lead to expensive and significant repairs. Often these severe cracks, splits and breaks are caused by improper construction. If they're installed incorrectly or not sealed well, water can get into or behind these building materials and lead to cracks and breakage, often aided by ice.
Brick or masonry defects can also create stains on the sides of your buildings or windows. Talk to Clean and Polish about cleaning these leeched mineral deposits and caulking cracks and gaps.
There are a number of other possible construction defects to look out for including faulty exhaust or ventilation systems, structurally unsound balconies, drainage complications and problems with fire sealing.