Seasonal home repairs to take you from winter into spring

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As winter fades away and warmer spring weather is ushered in, there are a lot of chores that homeowners must prepare for. While airing out the house and prepping the garden are always high on springtime to-do lists, too many homeowners forget how important it is to check the structure of their homes for any weaknesses harsh winter weather brought with it

The roof
Your roof can really take a beating after rounds of inclement weather. Snow and ice can pile up in the winter, putting weight and pressure on the structure of your home. As temperatures change and snow melts during the day, water can get into small spaces and cracks in your roof. Then as temperatures drop again at night and that water refreezes, it expands and can cause some minor spaces to become pretty nasty gashes in the structure of your home. High winds can damage and remove shingles.

If your roof was battered by snow and ice this winter, you need to start by assessing the damages so those April showers don’t bring leaks, mold and water damage. 

If you have reason to believe that your roof is unstable, such as obvious structural damage that can be seen from the ground, or major leaks in the attic, reach out to professional contractors rather than climbing up onto the roof yourself to do an external intake of the destruction. In the meantime, you can look for other signs of damage. Leaks in the attic will be a strong initial indicator that there has been some damage done to the roof, for example, or water stains on ceilings. If you can see any places where the roof is sagging, that’s a sign that part of its structural integrity has been compromised. 

Areas that are the most vulnerable to freezing damages will be around chimneys, skylights or other openings. 

Fortunately, most of the problems your roof will face after the winter months are minor enough that they need to be patched rather than having the whole roof replaced. Fixing these problems early and correctly is essential for making sure that they don’t get worse, so don’t hesitate to hire a professional to tackle this delicate task. It could end up saving you a lot more in the long run to ensure the problem was properly solved. 

The siding
Your home’s siding is both an important aesthetical and protective feature. Cracks can make way for leaks that can lead to rot or mold growth in your walls. Energy efficiency can also be thrown off by siding damages.

From washing your siding down after a heavy season of kicked up dirt and salt to give it a clean look to making major structural repairs, getting your siding in shape for spring is an important step. Depending on the extent of damages incurred during the winter, you’ll likely be able to get away with a few minor repairs instead of a total replacement of your siding. 

The first thing to look for is any noticeably missing pieces of your siding. If everything appears to be in place, inspect for any cracks or dents. Use binoculars to get a better look at the upper floors of your home without having to climb up on your ladder. Minor dings and cracks can be filled with putties, but if there are large splits in any of the boards they should be replaced entirely. 

Getting a professional opinion is important for making the right changes on your home’s exterior. Look into a consultation from a contractor before making plans for any big repairs to your siding. 

Inspecting the siding of your home after winter is the best way to stop leaks before they start.

The basement
For many homes, basement flooding is as much of a sign of spring as spotting the first robin of the season, but it doesn’t need to be that way. Finding and repairing breaks that let the melting snow and springtime rain pool up in your home is imperative for protecting your house and letting you get better use out of your cellar. 

Leaks are common where the walls meet the ceilings or floors, so if you aren’t sure where that water is coming from, that’s a good place to start searching. Filling any obvious splits in the walls will make it harder for water to find its way into your basement. Professional contractors can help in this area to make sure that the basement is completely sealed.

Another way to prevent basement flooding is shift your focus to the top of the house instead of the bottom. Clogged or broken gutters can cause water to drain improperly and pool around the foundation of the house, giving it time to seep in. 

If you have a finished basement, or would like to finish your basement, you will need to make these structural repairs to keep the room from being ruined by water. Use flooring that is insulated and resistant to mold and warping to avoid any major renovations in a short period of time if you think your home could easily flood again. 

Checking your home for winter damages should be as routine as spring cleaning and yard work. Think of it as an essential step for protecting your home investment and make sure that it will stay safe and secure for the rest of the year. Now is also a good time to consider any major renovations or upgrades. If you’ve been thinking of trying new siding, replacing your windows or building a deck, the end of the winter season is a great time to assess your home’s needs and start a fun new project before summer. 

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