Must Fix Items Before Winter

Walter Green - General Manager
November 17, 2015

Must Fix Items Before Winter

With winter just around the corner, time no longer seems to be on our sides, and there are certain home repairs that feel the same way. Whether it's a suspicious water spot on the ceiling, a slight crack in your foundation, or clogged gutters, there are some issues your house may be warning you about, and the odds are you really don't want to ignore them. You'll want to be sure to keep an eye out for these warning signs so you can address them right away to ensure that a small problem doesn't turn into a larger and more expensive issue.

Clogged Gutters

Don't neglect your gutters! If not properly maintained, they could spell big trouble during the winter, including ice or water damage. If you notice your gutters and downspouts are overflowing with leaves or seem to not be draining properly, be sure to give them a good cleaning and ensure they are firmly affixed to the house, with downspouts draining away from the foundation. While these steps may cost you an afternoon, it's well worth it to avoid the expensive effects that you could suffer by putting it off.

Loose Railings

Wobbly railings along your porch, deck, or steps is a sign there's a weak connection between one or more of the posts and the frame. The fix is almost always easy; just tighten screws or lag bolts in places that don't seem sturdy. Whatever you do, though, don't ignore them. Eventually the loose rail will give in, leading to a broken section of the structure that's much more costly and time consuming to deal with than a few minutes spent tightening things up.

Water Warnings

A water spot on your ceiling is something that should never be don't ignored. While it's obvious you may have a leak somewhere, the cause is not always as clear; meaning you could be dealing with something much worse than a loose shingle or a little condensation. You may need to consider enlisting a roofing contractor at the first sign of trouble to get a clear picture of exactly what's going on instead of brushing it off or trying to decipher the problem yourself.

Faulty Faucets

If you notice a leaky faucet or a running toilet, you'll need to address it right away. Spending a few minutes giving your systems a quick checkup will alert you to any bigger issues that may exist, and your water bill will also benefit from fixing a leak of any size. If you put it off, however, a small leak could get worse, doubling the size of the problem.

Foundation Faults

Houses tend to “settle” over time, and in some cases that can cause small cracks to appear in your home's foundation. If you find one or more cracks don't neglect them; fill them immediately while they are still small and on the surface. If you put off the repairs, water and ice damage could cause real structural problems. Quick-set mortar mix or cement an effective patching material; and most can be applied and smoothed with a hand trowel.

Chimney Blocks

This is one problem you do not want to ignore. If you don't properly service your chimney, you run the risk of suffering from a fire, smoke inhalation, and carbon monoxide poisoning. Soot and creosote build up over time on the interior of the chimney, and can only be removed by physically brushing the chimney. You'll also need to inspect the chimney cap to make sure it's not rusty or damaged; this will prevent debris or pests from entering your home.