Preparing Your Home for Winter

Preparing Your Home for Winter

Here in St. Louis, we often don’t get much warning before the seasons change. Sure, we know that in November and December it should be winter, but we aren’t surprised when we have a 65 degree day mixed in there.  We also aren’t surprised when we go to bed on that 65-degree day and wake up to temperatures in the teens.

How can you make sure your home is ready for those major temperature swings?  Read on for some tips!

Regular Foundation Inspection

First and foremost, maintenance on your home’s foundation should be done annually.  This can be as simple as a walk around your home. Check for foundation cracks or gathering water on the exterior and checking again for cracks or bowing walls on the interior.  Discovering potential issues early can prevent further damage and save money.  Take a look at your home now and get a baseline so that you can recognize any changes or shifts in soil, water, or cracks.

If you note any of these things occurring, contact Foundation Doctor of St. Louis today! We will be happy to inspect your foundation for any leaks, cracks, or compromises in the integrity of the walls.

Turn off Exterior Faucets

When we get far enough into winter to see snow, ice and freezing temperatures, you definitely want to have made sure that all of your exterior faucets have been turned off for the season. This includes all of your hose bibbs, plant irrigation pipes, and any other exterior water lines.

Turning these valves off will help you avoid freezing pipes, which can cause major damage. If your pipes freeze, the water inside will expand, potentially rupturing the pipes and causing flooding inside walls or in your basement depending on the placement of the pipes.  Many homes now have frost-proof faucets, but turning off the water at the shut-off valve is the best way to avoid these issues.

Do you have a sprinkler system?  It’s important to call your service provider to shut off your system for the winter to ensure that none of these lines freeze as well.

Prevent Ice Dams

Last winter, did you see any icicles on your home? They certainly can be a pretty decoration, but in truth they are bad for the health of your home. Noticing a lot of icicles means that it’s time to inspect your home for air leaks. Inadequate insulation issues, and/or clogged gutters may also be an issue.  It’s important to address these issues as quickly as possible to prevent melt-water from backing up into your home from these areas.

Melting water can gather around the foundation of your home and cause leaks or bowing of the foundation walls.  These issues are both ones that the Foundation Doctor of St. Louis can address, but prevention is always easier than repair.

Divert Water

On the subject of melting water, really you will want to keep any water away from your foundation.  Diverting the path of water away from your home will help keep your foundation dry and functioning at its desired level.

There are a few ways to achieve these depending on the layout of your home and your yard, including extending gutter downspouts or adding a French drain.

If you need help or recommendations on the best way to waterproof your foundation, call the Foundation Doctor of St. Louis today!

Winter is Coming… Make Sure You’re Prepared!

Even if it’s already cold outside, you still have time to take precautions. It’s important to prepare your home’s foundation against the harsh elements of winter. The Foundation Doctor of St. Louis is happy to help you keep your family safe and warm this winter. 

Call for a free estimate today!