To find out if your home is ready for the next big earthquake, take the following short quiz.
Is your house bolted to its foundation?
An unbolted house can be shaken completely off its foundation. During the 1994 Northridge earthquake, thousands of unbolted homes were damaged or destroyed. Foundation bolting, also known as house bolting, is easy, quick and inexpensive.
These wooden stud walls are on top of the exterior foundation. They support the house and create a crawl space. Unbraced cripple walls may collapse, causing the house to fall. Bracing cripple walls is simple and provides greater resistance to earthquakes.
A water heater that is not securely attached to nearby walls may topple during an earthquake. A falling water heater causes water damage, and if gas or electrical lines are broken during the fall, a fire may result. Preventing this common and serious problem is easy and inexpensive.
Is your masonry chimney properly constructed and braced?
There is no completely effective way of preventing earthquake damage to an unreinforced masonry chimney. The best solution to this problem is removal of the chimney down to the top of the firebox and installation of a factory-built, metal flue enclosed in conventional 2x4 steel-stud framing.