Did you know that in 2022, 15 climate disaster events caused losses exceeding $1 billion each in the US so far? If you’re worried about the damage that winter weather can do to your home’s exterior, you’re not alone. The winter months are notorious for their ability to wreak havoc on roofs and siding. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
Following these simple tips will keep your home safe from water damage and excessive wear and tear during those cold months.
Clean the Gutters and Downspouts
In 2021, winter storms caused a record $15 billion in insured losses. Cleaning the gutters and downspouts is essential to keeping your home in tip-top condition. The function of these systems is to carry away rainwater collected on your roof so that it doesn’t pool up and cause damage to your house. However, if you don’t clean out debris from these areas, they can become clogged and prevent proper drainage. It is essential during winter when harsh weather conditions can cause branches and other debris to collect in the gutters. In addition to damaging your home’s structure if left unchecked, clogs can also lead to severe problems like water leaks inside the walls or foundation, which can cost thousands of dollars in repairs.
Repair Broken Shingles and Flashing
While working on your roof, take the opportunity to fix any broken or damaged shingles. While it won’t be an easy task, this is a great way to ensure that your roof is prepared for the winter weather ahead. Also, suppose there are holes in your flashing (the metal material that protects your gutters from water damage). In that case, you should be sure to repair or replace it before the temperatures drop. A good rule of thumb is that it needs to be repaired if you can see daylight through a gutter or downspout.
Address Any Damaged Seals Around Windows and Doors
Check for cracks or gaps around windows and doors. If a seal is damaged, it should be replaced. Make sure that the new seal is installed properly. If it’s not installed correctly. You may have trouble getting weatherproof seals back into place once they’ve been removed. Damaged seals often cause drafts and cold spots in homes with sliding glass doors or patio doors that don’t close well after being opened. Checking your window seals before winter begins will help ensure that you don’t find yourself with an energy bill skyrocketing due to drafts sneaking through your windows come January 2023.
Give Your Deck Some Love With a Good Pressure Wash
If you have a deck looking a little worse for wear, don’t despair! A good pressure wash will make it look new again. Pressure washers are great at removing dirt, mold, mildew, and other contaminants from surfaces like decks, siding, and concrete. The key is finding an environmentally friendly cleaner that doesn’t leave behind harmful residues. Using water pressure to clean off dirt and grime from your deck gives it an excellent deep cleaning that will extend its life by years. Pressure washing also means less time scrubbing away with harsh chemicals or brushes and less elbow grease required for the job. For example, in Birmingham, Alabama, the average low during winter is zero degrees, and the city averages 56 inches of rain annually. In such cases, it would be best to hire professional services for pressure washing in Birmingham, AL, to get your house taken care of before winter arrives.
Protect Your Plants From Freezing Temperatures
Reports have suggested that dropping temperatures can adversely affect the flora. When temperatures drop to freezing, you must protect your plants from the elements. The best way to do this is by covering them with tarps or frost cloths. You can also use burlap bags or mulch to protect against harsh winds. If you live in an area where ice storms are common, consider creating a structure that will keep your plants out of reach of falling ice chunks (such as a greenhouse). In addition to protecting your home exterior from winter’s worst, you must also take care of your plants inside. One way is by providing them with adequate lighting during the day. It includes sunlight and artificial light such as fluorescent bulbs or LED lights. During winter, when days are shorter than usual, many homeowners like using timers, so they don’t have to worry about turning on/off lights each morning/evening before heading out for work/school.
Inspect Your Driveway and Walkways for Cracks
Check for cracks in your driveway, walkways, or patio. Make sure you repair any visible before they get worse and cause further damage to your home. You can fill a small crack with concrete and use a paver sealant to prevent further damage. If you spot a large crack in your driveway or walkway, have it repaired by a professional as soon as possible. Large cracks indicate severe structural problems and will require more extensive repairs than what you can do yourself if they aren’t addressed quickly.
Winterize Your Sprinkler System
The winter season is one of the best times to winterize your sprinkler system. Your home’s exterior needs to be prepared for the cold weather by making sure no water will freeze and become useless and preventing any damage that may occur when temperatures drop. Turn off the water supply to your sprinkler system by shutting off all valves leading into it. Check all pipes and connections for leaks or cracks to avoid any dangerous situations with freezing pipes. Be sure no minor children are playing around these areas where they could get hurt if something breaks free from its mountings due to extreme cold temperatures outside. Clean out any debris that has accumulated inside or near your sprinkler heads so they won’t freeze over during winter months. You don’t want them popping up unexpectedly when spring arrives again.
Now that you know how to keep your home exterior winter-ready, we hope you’re ready to tackle these tasks. It might seem like a lot, but it’s just a matter of staying on top of your regular maintenance and giving yourself the time to inspect your house before winter arrives thoroughly. What is the best way to do this? Start cleaning! If you get started before temperatures drop and snow piles up, your home will be safe from damage until springtime comes around again next year.