Winter weather can take a serious toll on your home if it is not properly prepared. Storm and snow damage can result in thousands of dollars in repair work, and in many cases, homeowner’s insurance does not cover all issues caused by bad winter weather. Taking the time to have your home inspected and having the necessary repairs made can save you time, money, and the stress that results from an unexpected winter weather disaster.
1. Replacing Missing Roof Shingles
Roof damage is among the most common of issues during bad winter weather, especially in areas that see heavy snowfall and ice storms. The added weight of heavy snow and ice on your roof can cause strain, and if it has any weak areas due to missing shingles or damaged flashing, this could cause a partial collapse, as well as moisture damage.
Having your roof inspected and ensuring that missing shingles are replaced can help maintain the strength of your roof and prevent sagging and leaks as well. Ask your contractor whether your roof requires any special coating to help repel melting snow and ice.
2. Reseal the Driveway
If your pavement driveway has not been resealed for some time, you may want to consider having it done before the cold weather settles in. Cracks and small holes can quickly deteriorate into larger problems during winter weather and create potholes that can damage your vehicle and create a safety hazard. These problems could also prevent your driveway from being plowed properly during heavy snowfall or cause them to spread. Sealing and weatherproofing the driveway can help it withstand a cold and snowy winter.
3. Upgrade the Siding
Your home’s siding helps to protect it from the elements, but when it is old or damaged, this could cause several costly issues when the snow starts to fly. Cracked sections of siding or those that have begun to separate from the house could allow snow and ice between in and the exterior wood, which may lead to wood rot. Repairing old or damaged siding can be a preventative step that may save you thousands of dollars over time.
If you decide to have your siding replaced completely before the winter, you may want to consider choosing vinyl. Not only is it durable, it is less prone to dents and cracking than aluminum siding and is typically less expensive as well.
4. Have Your Heating System Checked
One vital aspect of winter home refinishing is to have your heating system cleaned and checked. Experiencing a heater malfunction during a bitterly cold day or even worse, in the middle of the night, could be stressful as well as costly. To prevent such problems, have an HVAC expert visit your home to inspect your heating system.
A heating and cooling professional can check a variety of system parts, including the heat exchanger, the ducts, and the air filters. Dirty filters will most likely be replaced and ducts may be vacuumed out to ensure better air flow. You may want to ask your tech about investing in a programmable thermostat to increase your heater’s efficiency.
5. Clean and Check Gutters
Your home’s gutters channel moisture away from the roof and the foundation of your home to prevent water damage. However, if the gutters are full of debris or there are gaps between the pipes, melting snow and ice may remain on the roof and cause moisture damage that can be costly to repair.
An inspection and cleaning of your home’s gutters should be performed by a professional who will know what to look for when it comes to any damage or disrepair. You may want to have this service scheduled in the early fall, as gutter cleaning services tend to get busy toward the start of winter.
Maintaining your home and preparing it for the winter can help it withstand blizzards and bitter cold. Preventative maintenance and repairs not only strengthens the exterior and interior of your home, but can offer you peace of mind as a homeowner all winter long.