Home Structure and Winter Weather: What You Need to Know

Friday, December 9, 2022

You know that old saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?" That's definitely true when it comes to protecting your home from winter weather. If you take the time to properly prepare your house for the cold months, you'll be much less likely to have any problems down the road. This blog will discuss some essential things you need to know about home structure and winter weather.

Via Pexels

What Does Cold Weather Do To The Structure of A House?

When temperatures drop and winter weather sets in, it can wreak havoc on a home's structure. Cold weather causes materials to contract, which can lead to gaps opening up around windows and doors. The expansion and contraction of the frame of your house due to temperature changes will also cause settling and cracking.

In addition, moisture seeps into the gaps and cracks, which can cause mold and mildew growth if not properly sealed. Moisture exposure can also lead to rot in wood materials, creating weaknesses in the structure's integrity. In fact, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), moisture is responsible for over half of all structural damage in homes each year.

This is why getting an annual inspection of your home's structure is so important—it helps you spot any issues before they become serious problems.

Home Structure Annual Inspection List:

To ensure your home's structure stays in good condition, it's important to have an annual inspection. Here is a list of items that should be inspected each year:

1) Exterior Walls:

Your home's exterior walls should be inspected for any signs of settling and cracking and any gaps that allow moisture to enter. In addition, walls should be waterproofed and sealed to prevent damage from moisture.

2) Roof:

The roof should be inspected for any wear or damage, such as missing shingles or flashing. Ice dams can also be a problem in winter, so if your home is prone to ice dams, you may want to consider installing a heat trace system.

3) Attic:

The attic should be inspected for any signs of moisture or mold growth, as well as adequate insulation and ventilation. You may also want to inspect for any pests that may have taken up residence during the winter months.

4) Basement:

The basement should be inspected for any signs of water damage or seepage. It's also important to check your sump pump and make sure it's working properly.

5) Foundation:

The foundation of a home is one of the most important parts to inspect. Look for any cracks or settling in the foundation and any evidence of water seepage. If you find any issues, it's a good idea to call FCS Foundation Repair for an estimate.

6) Gutters and Downspouts:

Make sure your gutters and downspouts are free of debris and in good condition. This will help ensure water is diverted away from your home rather than pooling around the foundation.

7) Windows:

Check all windows for drafts and make sure they are properly sealed to prevent air leakage. Make sure any caulking around window frames is intact, as this can help keep moisture out of your home. Also, check if any window weatherstripping needs to be replaced, so your windows stay energy-efficient.

Taking care of your home structure is essential to prevent damage in the winter months. An annual inspection can help you spot any issues before they become serious problems, so make sure to go through this list each year and check for any signs of trouble. Doing so can save you a lot of time and money down the road!

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