You can deny it all you want, but winter will be here soon. The way that the weather has been lately, who knows what to expect this year. A good piece of advice is to hope for the best but prepare for the worst.
There are some steps you can take now, while the weather is pleasant, to get your home or business ready for a visit from Old Man Winter. Being proactive now will save you money down the road, in addition to avoiding having to deal with repairs in the middle of a sub-zero cold snap.
Prepare the Exterior
If you haven’t yet, make sure that your gutters are clean and empty. Keep an eye on them during the autumn months, as they can quickly fill with falling leaves and other debris from trees. If water collects in the gutters or doesn’t drain properly, it can freeze in places that can damage your home or business. In addition, the water could spill down alongside your foundation during a thawing period. The water can damage your foundation by oversaturating the soil or freezing and pushing against the walls of your structure.
Another thing to check is the potential for ice dams. An ice dam can cause melting ice to back up and flow into your home. You can schedule a home-energy audit or meet with a weatherization contractor to see if there are any air leaks in your roof. Now is the time to get problems like that taken care of, before you start letting your heat go out through the top of your house.
Turn off any exterior faucets. Undrained water can freeze and cause the pipes to burst. Disconnect any hoses and drain the water in the lines. Depending on where the pipe breaks, you could have a big problem before you even know it.
Make sure that the concrete surfaces around your home are free from cracks or settling. It is much easier to repair these types of issues when the temperature is above freezing. Cracks in the concrete can grow larger if moisture enters them and then expands when it freezes. Sunken slabs can cause water or snow to accumulate against the foundation, leading to water damage or flooding. In addition, it can be treacherous enough with snow and ice, but having to worry about tripping over uneven concrete just adds to the danger (and potential insurance claim).
When walking around your property, check and see if dead leaves or other landscaping is up against the foundation. If so, clear it away before the snow and ice come. The dead plants can trap moisture against your walls, allowing the water to seep through your foundation.
Stock up on deicing products and shovels and make sure they are easy to get to before the bad weather comes. If you use a snowthrower, check that it is tuned up and ready to go, also. In the middle of a Midwest blizzard is no time to find out you need snow removal equipment.
If Problems Occur
If you do end up having a foundation or water problem, call an expert like those at Jerry’s Waterproofing. We’ll provide you with a free estimate and quality workmanship. We can repair foundations, basement walls, crawl spaces, and slabs. Jerry’s Waterproofing also provides basement and crawl space waterproofing.
Our waterproofing services and tools include basement drainage, sump pumps and pits, and waterproofing membranes.
Contact us today to save yourself money and headaches this winter. We look forward to helping you keep your home or business dry and safe.