Hopefully, thankfully and optimistically, spring will be here soon. As soon as it warms up somewhat, it is a good idea to inspect the exterior of your home to see how it held up during our worst winter in years.
Here are some things to look for:
- Gutters: Check to make sure gutters are securely attached and are not pulling away. They should be cleaned so that they can handle spring rain. Make sure downspouts drain away from the foundation and are also free of debris.
- Examine roof shingles to see if any were lost or damaged during the winter. Shingles that are cracked, buckled or loose need to be replaced. Check the ground for shingle granules. Do not attempt to get on the roof yourself. If you spot any potential problems, call a professional roofer to come out and give you an estimate. Your roof is essential to the integrity of your home. Don’t let repairs get away from you – catch them now and get estimates so that the work can be done before roofers get crazy busy.
- Interior ceiling stains could be a possible warning sign that the roof may need repaired or replaced.
- A professional roofer should check the flashing around plumbing vents, skylights and chimneys. Any needed repairs should be done by a qualified roofer.
- Have your chimney cleaned and inspected by a certified chimney sweep. Have the flue cleaned as well.
- Check the wood trim around windows, doors, railings and decks. Make needed repairs quickly before the spring rains can damage any exposed wood.
- Check the foundation carefully. Take time to clear away debris. If necessary, add fill dirt. Note any areas of cracking.
- Inspect your trees. The heavy winter snows may have damaged your trees, and any maintenance repairs should be done as quickly as possible before expected spring storms arrive.
- Remove and store firewood from near the home. It should be at least 18inches off the ground and 2 feet from the structure.
- Check the siding to see if you notice any problem area that needs repair. If left unrepaired, it could lead to extensive damage not only to the siding but to underlying areas as well.
- The most common siding defects that are prone to damage are the first couple of rows of siding and exposed or unprotected chimneys or chases subject to rain and sunlight. Neglected or damaged siding can lead to additional repairs to underlying sheathing and framing because moisture can enter these areas easily.
Here are some things to look for when checking for siding damage:
- Deteriorating or rotting siding
- Splitting or cracking of siding boards
- Cracks or brittleness
- Loose or missing siding
- Warped or curved siding boards
- Peeling or cracking paint
- Improperly sealed joints and nail holes
- Insect damage
Maintaining your home’s exterior siding requires regular inspection and maintenance to prevent additional damage to your home. Keep siding clean and adequately painted or stained when applicable, to prevent moisture, dirt, mold and mildew from penetrating the surface, which can shorten the life of the material.