Each season brings new weather conditions, and with new weather conditions come new risks to your home.
During the bitter winter months, in particular, your home is at a higher risk of particular kinds of damage. However, if you take the proper precautions, you can significantly lower your risk of experiencing these cold-weather problems.
During the fall, it’s the perfect time to begin getting your home ready for winter. Here are some of the preparations you should consider making before the coldest months come around.
Check your roof for damage
If you have asphalt shingles, in particular, this can be an especially vital precaution to take. If any of your shingles are currently damaged or otherwise out of place, it can make your home more susceptible to leaks.
Once the winter storms and melting snow come around, this can cause leaks to occur. Roof leaks can quickly become a severe problem, especially if they’re not repaired as soon as possible. Eventually, leaks can lead to mold or rot growing within your home, posing a health risk.
Other forms of water damage can also cause huge problems, especially if they damage the structure of your home. Water damage often requires pricey repairs—repairs that could have been avoided if you’d kept your roof in top shape.
Give your heating system a tune-up
No one wants their heater to suddenly shut down, especially not in the dead of winter. This is why it’s so important to address any heating problems before the temperatures outside plummet.
The fall months are the best time to have your heater inspected by a professional. This professional can ensure that there aren’t any problems with your heater, which could make repairs (or even replacement) necessary.
For instance, if your heater isn’t at peak efficiency, this could cause significant problems—especially if you’re looking to minimize your HVAC bills during the winter.
Stop ice dams in their tracks
For many homeowners, ice dams can be one of the most frustrating issues to plague their homes during the winter.
If ice dams are allowed to build upon your roof, it means water will remain trapped on the surface. As more water builds up and more ice freezes around the rim of your roof, the more likely it is that your roof will leak. If you have damaged shingles, as well, then your roof will be especially susceptible to leaking.
If your home’s attic is poorly insulated, or if it is suffering from air leaks, ice dams are more likely to form. This is because the edges of your roof can become colder than the rest due to the rest of your roof being heated from within. Ice and snow on the surface of your roof will then melt, while ice along the rim will remain frozen, trapping moisture. Eventually, this trapped water will freeze as well, causing the ice dam to grow gradually higher.
So, before winter rolls around, consider having your attic inspected for air leaks or problems with insulation.
Clean the gutters
It isn’t uncommon for debris, such as leaves and sticks, to become trapped in gutters. During the winter, however, it can turn into a far more serious issue.
Whenever gutters become clogged by debris, it means that leaks or flooding will be considerably more likely to form. In addition, snowstorms and melting snow can put a severe strain on your gutters due to the sheer quantity of water that needs to be drained away from your home. If your gutters aren’t functioning at max efficiency during the winter, then you could be putting your home at risk of water damage, flooding, and more.
Clogged gutters can lead to many kinds of damage. This backed-up water can damage your roof, wood trim, siding, basement, and more. Check your gutters for debris and give them a thorough cleaning out before the start of winter. Additionally, make sure your gutters aren’t damaged—if you find missing fascia or gutter boards, be sure to perform repairs or replacements immediately.
Contact The Pinnacle Group
At The Pinnacle Group, we strive to keep the roofs of Central Virginia in their best possible shape. So, before the start of winter, consider bringing in one of our experts to look over your roof and gutters. We can check for damage, and if that damage exists, we’re well-equipped to take on the necessary repairs.