The Calm after the Storm; 10 Tips to Secure your Home's Exterior
As we move into the holiday season, Floridians look forward to cooler days and less rain. Ending November 30th, we are glad that the rainy hurricane season is almost behind us. After months of typical FL weather and the heavy winds and downpour Hurricane Matthew brought, we – and our homes – may be a little worse for wear as we approach the holidays. Your roof and home exterior are the first lines of defense against extreme weather. Here are some tips to see if your home has taken on storm damage.
- Look for loose and fallen shingles on and around your roof and yard. Even now, damaged shingles loosened by past storms may still be coming off.
- See if your roof’s existing shingles appear cracked, curled, or “bare”. Asphalt shingles that have taken a beating from heat, sun, hail and water, may be lifted, worn and missing their granule coating.
- Look for dislodged trim or flashing around the edge and intersections of your roof. This can lead to water intrusion, wood rot and mold infestation.
- Rust in your roof flashing is another indication that deterioration has taken place. Gaps and pinhole leaks in flashing and other roofing materials will result in water penetration and damage to your home. Keep in mind that evidence of rust can be found on metal surfaces or staining on siding and trim and seen while standing safely on firm ground. For everyone’s safety, leave climbing up on your roof to the professionals.
- Look at the wood trim on siding or stucco finishes, window and door framing, fascia and roof decking, if possible. Wood rot or deterioration is cause for further inspection and repair.
- Search your home’s exterior closely for dents around window mullions. Mullions are the vertical dividers between the sections of your windows, and are where visible dents may result from hailstone impact. The presence of dents or splatter marks on any exterior home surface is a sure indicator of potential damage.
- Look for cracks, chips or discoloration on the surface of your siding or stucco; this reflects wear or damage and may compromise the envelope of your home. Wind-driven rain, “splash back” and fast-running water will erode anything it comes into contact with, including exterior surfaces such as wood, stucco and paint, as well as soil and foundation materials supporting your home. Loss of siding materials and structural erosion can lead to pervasive water intrusion and create the potential for structural cracking, wood rot, mold, infestation and other costly problems.
- Next, go inside your house and carefully look at walls and ceilings for any sign of water leaks. Check for small yellow stains, bubbling or flaking popcorn and for peeling paint or wallpaper, moist or discolored drywall or carpeting, and staining along baseboards. Small leaks and subsequent water damage may not be apparent for weeks or months after the storm.
- Mold and wood-decaying fungi usually develop in moist, warm areas or enclosed spaces with little or no ventilation. Be sure to look closely in the attic at walls and framing, including behind insulation and duct work. Use caution; inhaling or touching mold or mold spores can cause allergic reactions and health problems.
- Finally, call a licensed contractor to perform a thorough inspection for possible storm damage. Only a trusted professional has the experience necessary to spot all the signs of aging and storm-related damage to your home’s exterior.
Don’t wait; problems caught early can save a homeowner thousands of dollars on potential repairs! Even minor damage that goes unattended can leave your home vulnerable and lead to expensive major repairs. Now is the time, in the “calm after the storm” to discover and correct damage that may have occurred during this year’s hurricane season.
Call upon the professionals at Universal Roof & Contracting. Since 1993, we have been helping our Florida community recover from severe weather. Our experienced estimators are specially trained to detect storm damage. During our Free Severe Weather Home Evaluation, our experts will scrutinize your roof and entire home exterior. We will help you detect vulnerable areas that can leave you unprotected against water intrusion, wood rot and mold infestation. Many roofing companies follow the storms, but Universal Roof & Contracting is committed to securing Florida homes here in our own community. We will help you restore and fortify your roof and home exterior before and after the storm, advising you every step of the way. Call (407) 295-7403 now or contact us on line to schedule your Free Severe Weather Home Evaluation.
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