Winter is almost
upon us! Its hard to believe with Fall just settling in that snow, ice and cold
arent far from making their appearance!
Many of us experienced tremendous damage to our
homes last January and March. Roofs were tested under extreme weight from heavy snows,
water seeped into basements, ceilings collapsed, gutters detached...
Heres some Roof Tips:
Ice dams & icicles: When the warmth
from the house melts the snow on roofs...drains down to cold gutters/overhangs and
refreezes. The water backs up and gets under the shingles and into roofs, walls &
One handyman columnist, Glenn Haege, urges owners
to remove snow from roofs when a heavy snowfall occurs using a roof rake with an extension
handle, snow hoe or snow shovel (be careful, though, not to puncture flat roofs
Use calcium chloride at the rate of 1 cup every
100 sq. ft. (Haege recommends Dual Flake, Ice Devil, Storm Front or MAG) Pour calcium
chloride in eaves troughs to clear them as well.
Some experts suggest using roof heat tapes
(low-voltage electric cables that emit heat and can be plugged into an outdoor outlet to
melt snow and ice...be careful! Some house fires have been associated with this item!)
Reattach gutters that have pulled away due to the
weight of the ice & snow asap
Use gutter guards to prevent clogged gutters.
Clean gutters religiously in the Spring &
If your ceilings/walls get wet from ice damage,
they must dry out for two to three weeks before repairing may begin
Use a fan and pull back the attic insulation to
help the drying process for ceiling damage.
Water-damaged windows need to be recaulked
outside. (Use a siliconized acrylic caulk...most water-based acrylic caulks are useless in
below-freezing temps! Red Devil has a new caulk out called POLAR caulk).
Consider replacing your windows if the inside of
your windows are covered with moisture.
If a pipe has burst: shut off your main water
supply. Open the faucets in the basement (or 1st floor if no basement) to reduce pipe
pressure. Try to determine whether the leak is a cold or hot water leak.
Keep snow mounds away from the foundation of your
Have standing water in your basement removed
If water from sewer/sanitary lines back up into
basement, everything has to be disinfected. (Using Lysol or similar product).
Leaking water from a light fixture can be deadly!
Turn off the circuit to the fixtures and do not use the fixture until the dripping stops!
(Water plus electricity causes arcing or sparking...setting off an electrical fire)
These are just some of the precautions you can
take during the winter storms. Protect one of your largest investments...winterize soon
and you wont be sorry! v