Ah, Spring! Warmth, sunshine, and flowers. Gone is the cold and sleet, and instead, we get gentle showers and temperate breezes. Despite that, Spring can be a deceptive time of year. It comes right on the heels of winter, a notoriously bad season for your home. Between the snow, falling trees, and nor’easters, Spring seems like it should be a walk in the park. But don’t be fooled. Spring has some less obvious, but equally dangerous perils that your home will have to endure. Here are some things to keep in mind and keep an eye out for this Spring.
Wind Damage to Roofing & Siding
Spring brings warmer, more temperate weather on average, but with it comes powerful gales and thunderstorms. Roofing and siding that has endured an entire winter of ravaging are especially at risk for this. Your home may have experienced Ice Wedging over the long winters. Ice wedging is when moisture gets between two shingles or between your home’s siding, freezes and expands. This creates a wedge that drives the fixtures apart. This process repeats, essentially weakening whatever glue or hold that the fixture has. This will often come to light in the Spring, when winds may tear weakened roofing or siding of your house.
Speaking of roofing, tree overhang often times becomes an issue in the Spring. While this particular issue is a problem year-round, the Springtime sees some blustery weather, meaning that the branches of overhanging trees can make a mess of your home’s roof. The very action of tree branches scraping across your home’s roofing or siding as an erosive effect, weakening your home’s fixtures over time, and more so in the presence of storms or intense winds. Additionally, tree overhang allows tree-borne animals free access to your home’s roof, to nest, store food or wreak havoc on your shingling. Which leads us to our next point…
Insect & Vermin Infestation
All the critters wake up in Spring. After a long winter of hibernation, small mammals and insects wake up for Spring and get busy preparing for their new year. These sorts of creatures include ants, termites, squirrels, badgers, chipmunks, woodpeckers and a number of other animals that can potentially make a mess of your home. Arboreal critters such as squirrels and chipmunks will nest at a height that’s comfortable, meaning your roof, particularly next to chimneys or in places where they don’t feel overly exposed to airborne predators.
Burrowing animals, such as voles and badgers will often time make holes near the foundation of a home, creating new avenues for water infiltration and weakened foundations. Termites are an ever-present threat that remains active throughout winter, though at a slightly decreased activity level in the soil. When the weather becomes warm, they seek out moist areas to establish hives, which makes spring an especially dangerous time for homeowners, especially in unfinished basements that have leakage issues. Speaking of leakage…
Water infiltration is really a year-round issue, but Spring’s high rainfall makes leakage problems seem exponentially worse. Leakage can happen in multiple spots around your home. Besides the normal places of stress, like old roofing, water can make it in through unsealed windows or doors, and particularly those that are located where the ground meets the home, such as basement hopper windows. Making sure your home’s building envelope is sealed is a huge step towards reducing water infiltration, but ensuring your siding, windows, doors, and roofing are in good shape should be priority number one. But water infiltration in it’s most dangerous incarnation comes from an unlikely source, often times overlooked.
Water Runoff from Tired Gutters
That’s right – your gutters. Your gutters are unassuming, mostly forgotten pieces of your home. So what if they get clogged? Is it just water right? WRONG. Gutters that get clogged from fall foliage and winter debris pose a significant risk to your home’s foundation. Overflowing gutters create a waterfall from on high, that displaces dirt and erodes at your foundation over relatively short periods of time. One rainy Spring season of gutter neglect could cause significant damage to your home’s building envelope, creating vulnerabilities for ants, mice, or other undesirable creatures to burrow in through. The compromised foundation can also create wet spots, which will welcome in air quality hazards such as mold. Excess moisture in unfinished basements can even ruin insulation, or in severe leakages, flood and cause even more considerable damage.
We want you to enjoy all the refreshing seasonal changes that Spring has to offer.
Stop and smell the tulips, enjoy those warm rays of the sun and those breezy days – but don’t forget your home. So trim those trees, clear out those gutters, and check around your yard for signs of critters getting too close to your home, and carefully remove them (have a heart traps work great!) But most importantly, if you see signs of compromised roofing, windows, doors or siding, give us a call. A consultation costs you nothing and might save your home and family a lot of headaches, and unplanned costs.
Keep checking back for us for more tips, tricks and educational material about your home, and Peoples Products.
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