Six more weeks of winter. That is what’s in store for us. That means six more weeks of freezing temperatures, six more weeks of snow, and six more weeks of potential winter water damage in Chicago. Fortunately, if you do your due diligence, you can avoid many of the common issues associated with Chicago’s harsh winter weather.
How to Avoid Winter Water Damage
Melting snow and ice threaten to damage your home unless you take action. The following home improvement tips are designed to help minimize the potential threat of winter water damage, keeping your home safe.
- Roof Inspections: Inspect your roof- inside and outside – for signs of leaks. Winter can wreak havoc on your roof, tearing off shingles, causing ice dams and more. When detected early, roof leaks can be fixed before they cause too much damage. Inside: look for any wet plywood or dark spots. Outside: look for missing or damaged shingles.
- Ice Dams: Sometimes melted snow and ice will refreeze at the edge of your roof, forming ice dams and preventing water from properly draining. With nowhere else to go, the water will begin to back up under your shingles and into your attic. There are ways to prevent ice dams and water damage.
- Frozen Pipes: When a water pipe freezes and eventually bursts, it gushes water until the water supply is turned off. A one-eighth of an inch crack can leak up to 250 gallons of water a day! Potential water damage from frozen pipes is preventable.
- Gutters: Similar to ice dams, clogged gutters can cause water to back up under your shingles and into your attic. This is why it is so important to regularly clean your gutters.
- Sump Pumps: It is important to make sure your sump pump is well maintained. This will ensure your basement doesn’t flood when severe weather strikes.