Depending on geographic location, every home has a unique set of environmental concerns, from storm threats and seasonal temperature fluctuations to high humidity and moisture. For residents along coastal Delaware and the mid-Atlantic region, owning a shore home often means dealing with the threat of saltwater. Over time, saltwater is extremely corrosive and capable of eroding various materials, including glass, concrete, and metal. When materials break down, the structural integrity, safety, and efficiency of your home can be impacted.
In this article, we’ll discuss the threat of saltwater to coastal homes and how you can protect your property.
Threats of Saltwater Damage to a Home
Saltwater can pose a threat to any part of your home, including the foundation and structural walls. When electric components of the home, like electric wiring, are exposed to salt, the metals can corrode, causing shortages and device failure. Saltwater is also a better conductor of electricity than regular water and poses a significant safety risk to occupants. You can see why limiting saltwater intrusion is critical to preventing a host of hazards.
Now let’s explore some specific ways that saltwater can threaten the structural integrity of your coastal home.
Saltwater Impacts Protection of Windows Over Time
After saltwater evaporates on a surface, it leaves behind a salt residue, which will accumulate over time. These tiny salt crystals not only make it harder to see through the window but also eat away at the glass and frame over time. With enough corrosion, water can leak through the window structure and expose the home to humidity and other moisture-related issues such as mold and mildew growth.
Related Article: Choosing Windows for a Coastal Home
Saltwater Erodes Sealants
Exterior parts of the home, like siding, windows, and roofs, are often finished with protective sealants to prevent damage. Over time, salt buildup can break down the chemical compounds in these sealants, resulting in discoloration and eventual weakening of materials. The resulting damage can also expose the home’s interior to issues related to water infiltration.
How to Prevent Salt Corrosion and Saltwater Damage
Water alone is capable of breaking down different types of materials, like wood. However, the added component of salt makes it even more corrosive and capable of damaging even the toughest materials. Therefore, the best way to protect your home from saltwater corrosion is to prevent salt buildup.
Fortunately, preventing saltwater corrosion is as easy as routinely washing away salt buildup. This includes rinsing the exterior walls, cleaning the windows, and paying attention to any possible problem areas or crevices. Consider using a mild cleaning agent, like soap or vinegar, to really break up the salt and residue.
Be sure to regularly inspect your property and keep an eye out for salt buildup, so you can protect your coastal home from the elements.
Related Article: 3 Reasons Why You Should Perform Routine Home Maintenance
Ready to Take On Your Next Summer Home Improvement Project?
Here at Advance Inc., we are proud to offer our community and customers outstanding services and reliable resources that help maintain and protect their homes. Learning about the environmental threats in your area is essential to preventing damage and making sure your home is safe and sound.
Advance Inc. is offering special deals through July 31, 2021, on all major areas of home renovation, including roofing, windows and doors, siding and trim, and decks. Explore our website or contact us today to learn more about your options. We are happy to answer any of your home improvement questions!