Preventing Winter Weather Damage to Your Home

Green house with ice dams and icicles on roof.

Minnesota winters bring with them a host of issues that can affect homeowners. Knowing the issues and how to prevent them can save homeowners headaches and money. The most common issues winter weather brings for your home are ice dams, snow damage, freezing pipes, meltwater flooding, and pest infestations.

Ice Dams

Ice dams are often caused by clogged gutters. Whether clogged gutters are caused by autumn debris or winter snow and ice buildup, the resulting ice dams in each instance can cause issues both in the spring and winter. When ice dams melt, they put homes at risk for water damage, mold growth, and rot. When melting, or during the winter, ice dams always offer the possibility of falling and injuring homes or homeowners. Keeping your gutters clean and using a roof rake can reduce the likelihood of ice dams.

Snow Damage

While snow can clog gutters and cause ice dams, that is hardly the harshest effect of snow upon your home. If enough snow accumulates it can damage your roof’s structural integrity, making leaks more likely to occur. Clean, unobstructed gutters and a roof rake are ways to prevent excess snow buildup on your roof.

However, snow buildup on your roof is not the only place homeowners need to concern themselves. Snow can accumulate on nearby tree branches, causing them break. Snow-damaged branches can not only damage homeowners and their property; it can also damage power lines. While knocking snow off branches can prevent excess buildup, sudden blizzards can down branches as well, so homeowners should always have a backup power source.

Freezing Pipes

Excessive and prolonged cold can cause pipes to freeze and burst, so homes should be adequately heated during the winter. While external faucets and plumbing that runs through unheated areas of your home are at the greatest risk of freezing, even a heated home can still suffer from frozen pipes. If the frost is deep enough, the pipes entering and exiting the home can freeze, even if ones inside do not. However, typically Minnesota’s snowfall prevents this from happening.

Meltwater Flooding

Because winter ground is frozen, melting water has no easy escape route. Water flowing over sidewalks and walkways can easily turn to ice, creating a home hazard. When meltwater is present around doorways, it can affect the door’s ability to operate correctly. This commonly occurs on garage doors, which can be affected from meltwater both outside and inside due to ice and slush on the underside of cars parked inside.

Unwanted Pests

The cold is hard on animals, too, which is why colder months see a rise in the number of animals trying to make their way into our homes. Being attentive to holes and potential invasion sites is key to preventing and removing these unwanted intruders.

Homeowner Vigilance

These common winter home hazards can strike without warning, and while maintenance and diligence can prevent and protect your home from winter weather, sometimes we must rely upon luck or a good repairperson.

As a full-service disaster restoration company, Royal Renovations can help you handle whatever winter damage you’re facing. Contact us to get started.

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