Spring and early Summer is the perfect time to get that home maintenance ‘to-do’ list complete – especially with larger outdoor projects.
Every Spring we see an increase in reviews about roofing companies and searches for ‘roof’ on our site, which can only mean one thing – this is the season for gutter cleaning, and addressing rooftop maintenance issues. Below are the things you should plan on addressing this Spring and Summer.
1. Loose or Broken Gutters
Debris left from uncleared leaves that fell in the Fall can clog gutters, which then leads to water backup and ultimately, the development of a potentially destructive ice floe.
The destruction happens when ice and snow expands and contracts in gutters. The weight of the ice blockage can cause the gutter to come unfixed, while expansion caused by the ice can split the gutter in vulnerable areas such as joints and downspouts.
To avoid this situation, it is critical to clear gutters of all debris, both in the Fall and after the Spring thaw. If your gutter has come loose from its fixed position, loosen pre-existing spikes or hangers and re-affix to left or right side of the previous fastening location. Be sure to screw or nail into a strong supportive location.
If your gutter has split, you should consider replacing it to avoid having to spring for more expensive and far-reaching repairs in the future.
Many homeowners prefer to clean their own gutters. Ensure you have a sturdy ladder and safety equipment so you don’t take a nasty tumble. If you have gutters on the second story, seriously consider hiring a professional to complete the job and perform maintenance in both Spring and Fall.
2. Chimney Deterioration
If you have an older home you may not have had your chimney inspected recently and so your chimney may be the source of issues. A common winter problem in snowy climates is that ice and snow rests on the top of your chimney. If the chimney is old, there is a strong likelihood that the chimney will have cracks in the crown (top).
When the snow melts during the day, the water runs into those cracks. At night, the temperature drops, and this causes the water to re-freeze. It then expands and pushes the mortar and bricks apart. If this keeps recurring, it can cause your roof to leak and/or cause your chimney to fall off of your house.
Have your chimney inspected regularly. If deterioration signs are present, we strongly recommend that you hire a roofing or chimney specialist who is qualified in this area.
3. Animal Lodging
Loose flashings or siding, corroded or rotten fascia boards and dormant chimneys are all vulnerable places that raccoons, squirrels, chipmunks, birds, bats and wasps exploit to gain entry into your home.
Recurring noise on or in your roof or in your walls may indicate that you have an unwanted boarder of the animal kind. If you are not sure, you can call your local wildlife centre and they will offer guidance.
If you are certain however, that there is an animal nesting in your roof, start your search for a humane wildlife removal and control services by reading reviews on HomeStars.
Wildlife removal companies will help get animals out of your home and then safeguard areas where animals and pests have been gaining entry so they no longer are able to. If any damage has been done to your roof, a professional roofing company should be called to do the repairs.
4. Wet Basement
During winter months, downspouts can become dislodged, causing water to flow directly around the foundation of your home. Most alarmingly, water can then saturate your foundation and leak through to your basement, causing significant long-term problems.
The risks of ignoring water flow in all the wrong places can be foundation cracking, mould, and potential destruction of any renovations you have already undertaken.
Check all downspouts to ensure that they are all connected properly and positioned correctly. Also, clear any debris that could be causing drainage problems.
5. What you can’t see but should be aware of.
During the winter months snow melts and re-freezes causing it to act like a wedge under shingles or behind flashings. This leaves your roof vulnerable to leaks.
To prevent further damage and troubleshoot any existing problems, inspect your roof very closely in the Spring. We strongly recommend that you use a roofing professional who is trained, qualified and INSURED to work in elevated conditions.
Inspection should include all roof penetrations, flashings and valleys to ensure they have not been lifted by the ice. Inspect caulking areas to make sure there is no cracking as well as all shingles to ensure there are no cracks or damage to material.