Quiz: The Ultimate House Entropy Quiz: HowStuffWorks
The Ultimate House Entropy Quiz
4 Min Quiz
Cleaning gutters, replacing roof shingles and recaulking windows are all aspects of home maintenance. What do they achieve?
All these aspects of home maintenance protect your home. Stop doing them, and your home will fall victim to the ravages of weather and time.
How long it would take for a home to deteriorate depends on which factors?
A home can deteriorate at different rates depending on a variety of factors. Some of these include the climate and the current state of your house maintenance.
What is your home's biggest foe?
Surprisingly, your home's biggest foe is water damage, often starting with water leakage in the roof.
How are most roofs structured?
Most roofs, at least in the U.S., are made of roofing shingles covering a type of plywood underneath.
What is the expected lifespan of roof shingles?
Most roof shingles are expected to last between 20 and 30 years.
Where do you find the home's "envelope"?
The "envelope" is the exterior walls, door frames and window frames just inside your home's outer shell.
What damage can leaves trapped in the gutters cause?
Leaves trapped in the gutters can mean no drainage for the rainwater. This would lead to water spillage onto your roof, which would penetrate inside.
Why do paint and wallpaper peel when you have a hole in your roof?
A hole allows the entry of cold air, which mixes with the humidity within. Condensation forms and the moisture causes the peeling.
Your builder used caulking to seal the windows. Why are there signs of rotting there now, years later?
Chances are, if the builder did the job long ago, it's no longer effective. Caulking has a lifespan of about 25 years.
Which home construction material deteriorates sooner: brick or wood?
They both have similar rates of deterioration.
Over time, where does moisture seep into a brick home?
Moisture makes its way into the shell of the home, which lies underneath the brick exterior.
When your house undergoes its final stages of decay (even though you hope it'll never happen), what is the last to go?
This is, of course, a theoretical question; you hope it'll never reach this ugly scenario. But if it does, the metal plumbing and gas pipes would still be holding, assuming you've taken good care of them over the years.
Termites and other tiny bugs are an ever-threatening danger to your home. What makes a conducive environment for them to breed and bore through your timber?
Termites and other creatures just love moisture. It's their favorite environment!
When termites eat through your timber, what is the nature of the process?
The termites use bacteria that is found in their stomachs in order to break down the timber into cellulose.
If your house is in a bad state of repair, what damage could dry outside vegetation cause?
If the vegetation is really dry, it could pose a fire hazard.
How can tree roots cause major damage to a neglected house?
Tree roots that are allowed to proliferate can loosen the soil and cause water penetration into the very foundations of your home.
After many years of disuse, a house could see the decay of its footing or structural base. What is the worst that could happen then?
It could actually form what's called a sinkhole. This is literally a huge hole, large enough to engulf a crumbling house.
In hot climates, what could cause a home to decay sooner?
Humidity could cause an accelerated decay process in hotter climates.
What might cause a home to decay sooner in cold climates?
Frost within your home's foundations could cause the rapid decay of your home in colder climates.
Is there hope for a home that was badly constructed from the beginning?
Optimistically, there is sometimes hope for a badly constructed home, but it would require an expert restoration process.
Home Sweet Home, goes the cliché. But that's assuming it was constructed well and that you are maintaining it lovingly. If you neglect it, entropy can set in with the result of inevitable decay. Keep your home sweet with its inherent sparkle by taking this quiz on house entropy.
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