What Should I Check on My House After a Harsh Winter?
Arctic temperatures and cold waves are never good news for anyone or anything, including your home. Hopefully, you’ve done your home inspection before it all started and fixed the potential problems in time before the next winter.
Inspect After Harsh Winter
However, even that is not a guarantee there were some hidden damages, so now when the weather is milder, you’ll want to do a general check-up to avoid unpleasant surprises. It’s always best to hire a professional inspector company, just to be on the safe side, but even then you should know in advance what are the points to which particular attention should be paid, and make sure they are not skipped. So here’s what not to miss.
If you had no pipe freezing or burst during winter, you are lucky, that’s great. But that’s still not a guarantee some unnoticeable damage, such as a small leak hasn’t happened, so make sure to inspect all the visible plumbing thoroughly. Start from the attic and go all the way to the basement. The best way to inspect if everything is fine is to check the joints and seams by running your finger over to look for potential leaks and creaks. Next place to investigate is under the sinks.
Also, turn off all the taps and listen carefully for possible dripping or water rushing. What’s more, if you notice a drop in pressure, or establish any other problem, turn off the water in the whole house and dial your plumber. Another indication of a latent problem can be your water bill, so if you notice extreme increase during the cold period, that can be a clear sign something is not right.
The roof is another part of your house you shouldn’t miss to inspect. Again, it may see that everything went fine and that your home is unscathed, but you can never be hundred percent sure, and with the arrival of spring and potential rain showers, you don’t want to leave anything to chance. A professional roof inspection is your safest bet, but you can do some preliminary work yourself.
Some of the hints to look for are missing, curled, or cracked, and even dirty shingles. All these can be signs of a problem. Also, pay attention if some pieces of flashing are missing. These are all indications that granules have been washed away. The causes of the potential damage can be water that gets under the shingles, it freezes and then starts melting; or the stable and high wind that can dislodge flashing or shingles near the chimney and skylight.
Hopefully, if there are any problems at all, the damage is nothing more than a small leak, and just patching will do. However, if your roof is more than twenty years old, chances are you will have to replace regardless how small the leak. Maybe not immediately, but soon enough you will have to do it.
The cycle of freezing and thawing can do a lot of damage to your house exterior, your driveway, but most notably your foundation. If you notice the hairline cracks, which occur naturally with time as the house settles, have expanded after the harsh cold, it is time to do something about it. Namely, if expanded in such a way due to the cold, those normally harmless cracks can cause serious structural problems if not taken care of immediately.
This timely repair after winter can also help prevent some future potential problems. It can be quite an expense, but it can you save from the future headaches and even bigger costs and difficulties. To save money, prevention is always the best way. That’s why it’s essential to inspect the foundation every spring, immediately resolve all the potential, hopefully, smaller issues, and prevent the piling up of the problems which could eventually cause a real catastrophe to your house.