Risks Your Home Faces in the Winter

In the Greater Cincinnati area we’ve moving from  autumn to winter, and homeowners have to begin to prepare for the new season. Winter brings an end to a whole set of outdoor chores and tasks, but your work as a homeowner isn't done. Instead, there’s a whole other set of risks you need to be aware of. We wanted to take the chance to stop and remind you of some of these items and hopefully help you prepare for mitigating these risks for a warm and happy winter season!

Your Roof 

The first part of your home to consider is the one that literally keeps the snow and rain off of your head. The roof of your home deals with some of the biggest challenges weather offers throughout the year, and winter brings the harsh risks of snow and ice. Snow builds up on your roof, where rain simply washes away. Snow weighs about 20 pounds per cubic foot, and that extra weight sits on your roof for an extended period of time. It doesn’t stop there though, as melting brings new issues. Since heat rises, you will see the snow on your roof melt unevenly, particularly if your home’s insulation is uneven or wearing out. This means that as snow higher up on your roof melts, it runs into the colder portions of your roof lower down and re-freezes. This creates ice dams, which allows water to sit on your roof over time, thawing and refreezing as the temperatures fluctuate throughout the day. (A common cycle in the Ohio River Valley region) This creates an opportunity for the water over time to seep into your roof, causing damage to both shingles and decking. If left unchecked, the damage will spread, with water leaking into your attic or crawlspace as well as your walls.

Cracked Siding

Deep winter brings extremely low temperatures, and your vinyl siding becomes susceptible to damage. This stems from the fact that extreme cold can leave the vinyl siding more brittle as it freezes and hardens in the cold, so that wind and casual bumps can cause damage that would otherwise bounce off in warmer temperatures. What’s more, as the weather alternates between rain and snow, water can leak into loose spots in your siding, where it freezes and expands. This further exacerbates damage being done by the cold and creates a cycle where the damage increases over time. The expanding ice creates larger openings which allows more water to seep in, which creates more damage and even larger openings and so on.

Salt is a Vicious Menace

Chemical de-icers are a boon to modern life. Allowing local governments to pre-treat roads in preparation for heavy winter storms, and to quickly react to unexpected layers of ice on roads. Even on private property, these chemical additives can be used to clear your driveway or sidewalk with far less effort and time than a shovel alone would require. While a wide array of different products are available, they’re usually referred to with the generic term “salt” despite the fact that they all carry slightly different chemical makeups. Something many of these products have in common, unfortunately, is a downside. They can cause long term damage to your property, especially when used on wooden decks and concrete sidewalks. This is because the salt components are absorbed by water after melting ice and snow, then soak into the material where they’ve been placed. This then causes the gradual breakdown of the material components of these surfaces. The damage doesn’t stay limited to the outdoors, however. As you walk through both private property and public areas, you undoubtedly set foot on a variety of surfaces that have been treated with these salts, which then clings to your shoes and clothes and gets tracked into your home. 

Of course, with all of these risks, you need a partner that’s ready to help you out. That’s where Kings of Clean comes to the rescue. We offer complete service from your roof to your driveway to keep your home looking its best. We wash away salts and other particulates that winter weather accumulates around your home to protect your surfaces from long term damage. Roof washing and gutter polishing are great ways to keep your roof clear, and through our partnership with New Heights Roofing we can offer a full roof inspection to identify possible issues before they become major hazards. We have the expertise to clean your siding without risking damage to fragile cold vinyl, and clear your driveways and sidewalks of built up salt. Contact us today to learn how we can help your home stay warm and dry this winter season!