Your grand old home may be an object of beauty and admiration. But when the weather gets rough, it’s going to take a serious beating. Blizzards and rainstorms may dislodge loose exterior materials and expose them to water. That’s why it’s crucial for you to prepare it for bad weather. In this post, we’ll show you simple but effective ways of weatherproofing your home against the elements.
- Replace Windows
Many old homes have wooden windows with chipping or rotting wooden frames. If yours is among them, you can expect the frames to deteriorate during winter and let in water, which could ruin your décor. Chisel out the damaged parts of the wood, then fill the holes with an appropriate filler. When it dries up, sand and repaint it or varnish it. To prolong the life of your sash windows, ask your carpenter to create good surroundings and fit draft excluders. If your old windows are in bad shape or unrepairable, replace them.
- Do Wall Repairs
Check sections of the wall render. If they’re puffed out or cracked, or if pointing is loose, put it right back before rains start pouring. Otherwise, water will penetrate and damage your home. Ask your local foundation repair expert to inspect cracks and determine whether they’re a threat to safety or structural integrity. While you can repair smaller cracks yourself, it’s best if you let professionals handle repairs. Don’t forget to repaint your wall. Use masonry paint as it will withstand the elements better than other kinds of paints.
- Fix Your Roof
Inspect your roof for missing, loose, or broken tiles/shingles from the ground level. Ensure your chimney pots are intact and aerials attached securely. Use binoculars to have a closer view, but don’t climb on the roof or hang out of your windows. If you find that an up-close inspection is necessary, call your roofing professional to perform it. They have the right tools on them and can carry out safe assessments before undertaking any repairs.
- Lock Out Drafts
Cold air can get into your home through gaps below the front door. Get a draft excluder and screw right at the lower section. A row of bristles will fill the air gap but still let air move freely. Alternatively, you can apply self-adhesive foam around your door frames and windows or a letterbox draught excluder. If you have a sticking door, ask your local carpenter to fix it. It could have slipped in its hinges. Rehanging it will solve the problem.
- Clean The Gutters
Your gutters act as the first line of defense against rainwater. When it’s clear of debris and leaves, water will flow freely to the downspout, where it will be channeled away. Check the gutters for trapped leaves and debris and remove them. To prevent future build-up, buy a leaf-guard filter and install it over the gutters.
- Insulate The Attic and Basement
Since the basement and attic are connected to living spaces, they should be insulated. Proper insulation can slash the cost of heating and create a dry, comfortable living space. We recommend loose-fill insulation over batt insulation as it’s cheaper and offers better coverage when correctly installed.
- Check Your HVAC System
Before winter sets in, check and ensure your HVAC system is functional. Most units can work for many years without problems. If you don’t check yours, you may never know when it’s due for service. Ask your local technician to inspect the filters and ductwork. It’s better to have an HVAC malfunction when the weather is mild than right and the middle of winter.
- Insulate Your Water Pipes
Exposed water pipes can burst in winter and cause serious flooding. Water can damage your belongings and foster mold growth, among other secondary issues. Insulating these pipes ensures water doesn’t freeze and thaw. It also helps if you leave the lowest tap partially open so water can drip. Don’t forget to shut off water pipes that go outside.
While you can handle some of the simple issues, challenging ones like roof repair, foundation repair, and basement waterproofing are best left to skilled personnel. They can diagnose the problem quickly and apply the correct fix.
If you’d like to waterproof your basement but don’t know where to start, schedule a free basement waterproofing inspection with your local contractor. Our experts can implement reliable solutions that will keep your home dry, intact, and clean even in bad weather.