Posted by: Lara's Services Group on February 15, 2022
Is Your Home Ready for Spring?
Spring is around the corner – is your home ready?
Believe it or not, spring is almost here! The beautiful summer days are closer than ever, but before you can enjoy days spent outside in the sun, it’s important to make sure your home is prepared for the unpredictable weather that comes with spring – regardless of where you live!
Rainy weeks, melting snow and ice, and more storms with the potential to be severe can all derail an otherwise blissful spring season. But with the right preparations and plans in place, you don’t have to stress about spring weather potentially creating water damage in your home.
Everyone has heard the phrase “April showers bring May flowers”, but April shower can also bring flooding and excess water around your home or business. If you see pooling water around the foundation or your house or along your roofline, it may seep into your home and cause even more damage. Check your roof and attics for leaks on wetter than normal days, if you see any moisture, water stains, or standing water, you should call a professional to assess the extent of damage that this water has caused.
When you are looking at your roof, it is also a good idea to check your basement. Because, by nature, your basement sits before the surface of the ground, it makes it easier for water to wiggle its way through cracks in your foundation, window wells, or other unsealed parts of your home. Catching leaks right away, especially in a finished basement, can help you avoid costly water damage to your walls, electrical, plumbing, or flooring. In some cases, water damage left unchecked can lead to mold growth and structural issues in your home.
Melting snow and ice can also increase the likelihood of excess water being around your property. This can occur within a matter of hours and can cause water damage just as quickly. Keep an eye on the amount of snow and ice that is around your buildings. If possible, try to move some of it away from your home or down-slope from it. That way, when the material start melting, it has a lesser chance of ending up in your home.
With the change in temperature comes expansion and contraction of many commonly used building materials in homes. This small, big significant, change in size could lead to water sneaking through cracks that it creates. Two of the most common areas this can happen is in foundations or concrete structure or your windows. Examine your basement walls or the exposed area around the exterior of your home. Do you see any large cracks that weren’t there before the winter? If there are, it might be time to contact a professional. When looking at your windows, is there any staining or bubbling of your paint around the area? Another indicator is if the windows are harder to open or close than you remember them being. This is a sign that something drastic has shifted – which could lead to water finding its way into your home too.
The changing weather and pressure in the system in spring can often lead to extreme weather events. While heavy rain can be damaging on its own, high winds, tornados, and other storms can send trees into your home, damage to your siding, damage to your roof, or damage to your windows. When this damage happens during a storm, it creates an even bigger opportunity for water to get in a soak your home. Our team of professionals can not only repair the damage done to your home during the storm, but also restore the inside of your home to remove all tracing of water damage that may have occurred.
Spring is a beautiful time to enjoy the rising temperatures and get back outside, but the changing weather can also lead to water damage troubles around your home or business. Knowing what to look for and who to call if you suspect water damage in your home is an important step when being prepared. If you have a question about possible water damage in your home, call our team of professionals. We can help you repair and restore your home so it is comfortable and safe for your entire family.
Frequently Asked Questions
While there could be some initial cost-saving in laying new shingles over an old, aged roof, we generally don't recommend re-roofing. Old shingles also mean an old roof deck. By tearing off the old shingles, our licensed roofing contractor will then be able to spot any areas of instability or damage to the roof deck that may have been hidden by the shingles. We can replace any sections where there may be wood rot. Roof installation techniques and materials have also changed over the last couple of decades, and your old roof may not be up to code. "Re-roof" jobs may also not carry the same warranties as a full replacement.
Yes! Our experienced, licensed roofers will inspect your roof up close to assess the scope of any obvious damage and also map out the probable unseen damage just below the surface. With that knowledge at hand, we will let you know if roof repair is the most affordable option or if you're better off with a full roof replacement.
For the majority of surfaces in your home, bleach won't actually get rid of your mold problem. It's the "iceberg effect." Visible mold is usually a small percentage of the actual amount of mold growth. Bleach can't kill mold on porous surfaces like wood, and while tile or fiberglass surfaces can be cleaned with bleach, often the mold has spread far deeper. The reason why mold remediation companies don't recommend DIY cleanup isn't that they want to make more money; they know, in their experience, that a mold problem is usually far more invasive than can be seen with the naked eye. Simply cleaning the surfaces can provide false assurances that you got rid of the mold, only to have it come back time and time again.
Sometimes mold remediation is included if the cause of the mold was a "covered peril" like a burst hot water heater or water damage caused by firefighters extinguishing a fire in your house. Gradual water damage - like from a leaking pipe or hose - will often cause mold growth, but your insurance coverage will usually not cover that by claiming that it was caused by poor maintenance or neglect. If your insurance company denies your claim, you should request an inspection from a mold remediation company that can help you document the source of the mold.
Most homeowner's policies cover most water damages, but not all water damages are created equal. There can be a lot of exceptions to coverage depending on the intricacies of your policy. This is why it's a good idea to be familiar with your policy and call your agent right away when damage occurs.
A good portion of water damage can be prevented by proper household maintenance. Routine plumbing maintenance as well as sump pump and appliance maintenance are effective ways to avoid preventable damages. If you live in a cold climate, preparing your home for the winter can also help avoid damage. Finally, it's a good idea to regularly check the exterior of your home, particularly your roof, for damage to ensure water isn't unexpectedly leaking into your home.
DIY soot removal is not recommended. Commercially available products can actually cause permanent damage to surfaces. Soot itself is primarily oil-based, but that residue also contains toxic, possibly biohazard contaminants.
Identifying the source of the water damage is one of the first steps in both the insurance claim process and before beginning to dry out and repair the damaged areas. After all, if you replace a sagging, wet ceiling that was caused by a roof leak but don't fix the roof, too, the next rainstorm will start the cycle all over again. The buckling to your hardwood floor could be caused by a leaking pipe. We will pinpoint the exact cause of your water damage and make sure the source is repaired. We make sure your restoration job is done right the first time.
If the inspection/assessment process was able to pinpoint the source and cause of the mold growth, once that source is repaired, you can be relatively confident about the success of remediation. Ask if your restoration technician has the IICRC certification for "Applied Microbial Remediation Technician." You can also request a "post-remediation mold clearance" from a third-party mold inspector to re-test the area for any remaining traces of mold before the area is treated with a sealer or encapsulant to resist future mold growth.
Each shingle brand provides a different guideline for how long they expect their shingles to last. A properly installed asphalt shingle roof will generally last up to 20-30 years with regular maintenance and inspection, especially after severe weather events.