Everybody was surprised by the heavy snowfall we experienced in Minneapolis and St. Paul last week. While for most people it was only a slight inconvenience, a late snow can cause some serious problems for your home.
If tree limbs are damaged or split they can fall or be blown onto your roof and penetrate the roof deck. Take steps to cut back the limb at the joint where it joins the trunk of the tree before it can separate and fall.
While the most visible damage occurs to landscaping like plants, shrubbery and trees, your home’s structure can also experience problems due to unexpected snow. For one thing,
spring snow is usually wet and heavy, causing excessive stress to your roof. Clearing away snow-pack as soon as it is safe to do so will help reduce the potential for damage.
Clearing away the snow will also help reduce the biggest threat to your home: water damage. When all that snow melts into water, where will it go?
If you have not yet had the time to clean your home’s rain gutters after a winter-long accumulation of debris, there is a good chance that melting snow will fill your gutter troughs and clogged downspouts. This could result in the water backing up under the edge
of your roof and seeping into the home itself. Even a small amount of water entering the home in this fashion can cause significant damage to walls, ceilings, floors and framing. Have a professional clean out your gutters as soon as possible so that they are clear and allow water to flow freely.
Another danger is that of ice dams. As the blanket of snow melts during the warmth of the day, water forms on the bottom layer and runs down the pitch of your roof toward the
The best protection against ice dams is proper attic insulation and ventilation. But that will have to wait until next year. For now, keep gutters clear and the attic sealed off to keep it as cool as possible.edge and gutters. This is exacerbated by warming of the roof deck from below. But when the melted snow reaches the edge of the roof during the cold evening hours, it can refreeze and form an “ice dam.” This can cause any following water to back up and seep under shingles or tiles into your attic. Again, any water in the home is a problem.
Snow piling up around your foundation is also a threat. As it melts and pools, the water can filter down into the ground surrounding a concrete foundation. When cold temperatures return at night this water can freeze and damage the foundation walls. It is important to clear snow away from the foundation area of your home.
If you have already installed screens in your windows in anticipation of warming weather, a casual inspection will tell you if any damage has been done. Most modern screens are durable enough to withstand some snow. Hopefully you kept the glass in your entry way storm door to protect the main door from the weather.
Now is also a good time to inspect your home’s siding to see if the latest storm has caused any panels to loosen, paint to peel or crack, or trim to separate or fall off. You want your home looking its best when the warm weather finally arrives to stay!
Twin Cities Siding Professionals would be happy to discuss your siding, windows or other home improvement projects. Call us at (651) 967-0873, or visit our web site at tcsidingprofessionals.com for a FREE in-home evaluation and estimate.