As autumn begins homeowners’ concern about flooding and water damage increase. All those rainy days that seem to never end are going to put your roofing to the ultimate test. Since winter is the next season, you need to be 100% sure that your house is watertight so the thawing snow won’t cause a deluge. Carefully inspecting the roof should be one of the priorities because a close inspection will reveal all the flaws, like damaged tiles or cracked flashings. Also, don’t forget the sides of the house as water is a tricky foe that finds its way through the tiniest of holes.
Insulating water pipes
You probably already know that insulation in walls is used to prevent wasting energy. However, insulation is also suitable for preventing pipes from bursting. As temperature drop in autumn in preparation for the winter chill, pipes become vulnerable. The most sensitive areas are in the basement and under the house where pipes are left to the mercy of the elements. Abrupt changes in air temperature could cause the metal to burst, so foam rubber insulation should be applied to all exterior piping.
Know where the main shutoff valve is
In case a pipe does burst inside the house, your prime objective should be stopping the inflow of water. There are valves all along the grid but in many cases they are either inaccessible, rusted or they might be broken. In such cases, the most important thing is not to panic but to look for the emergency shutoff valve.
Usually, this valve is the main shutoff valve and it’s located outside the house. Go outside and look in the manhole in your backyard and if you cannot located it there, then go into the street. The easy solution is to ask the plumber or the super the next time you see then where the main shutoff valve is so you are ready in case apipe suddenly bursts
Disconnecting the garden tap
Summer was the ideal time to spend time outside. You might have constructed a fountain or added an outdoor kitchen in your garden to make the stay more enjoyable. However, autumn means that you cannot spend the entire day outside so all the water feature will no longer get turned on. In fact, you might want to go one step further because there is still water left inside the pipes even if the tap is closed. In order to be 100% sure that water won’t freeze overnight and burst the pipes, you should disconnect all the water features entirely. Put them away in the shed for the next summer. That’s definitely better than letting then sit idle outside deteriorating.
An extra layer of protection
The least likely area you would expect to be the source of water damage have to be the walls. However, poorly executed construction work can result in thin and hollow walls that will do little to spot rainwater. That’s why an extra layer of protection could not hurt. Call rendering repair experts to make sure that the existing rendering on your house is solid or have them spray another layer of sand and cement. Such a granosite texture will be more resistant to damage and dirt as well.
Inspecting the roof…
In most parts of the worlds, the onset of autumn implies the beginning of the rainy season as well. This means that your roof will have to be 100% watertight in order to withstand days and weeks of incessant rain. Grab a ladder and climb up to the roof to inspect the tiles, gutters, and flashings. The latter present the most vulnerable places in the roof’s structure and this where most of the leaks occur. Caulk around flashings gets worn away over time so crack can appear that let water in.
As far as tiles are concerned, you can easily spot if a tile is broken or missing. However, it is much harder to notice if a tile is worn down to the point that it no longer serves its purpose. Look for fine-grain residue in the drain that will indicate that tiles are losing their structural integrity. The last thing you need is part of the roof giving way because it has been exposed to water for a prolonged period.
… and cleaning the gutters
Speaking of water damage that originating in the roof area, the gutters are the most likely culprits. Once leaves start falling down, they get washed from the roof into the gutters where they can easily create a clog. Once the water starts overflowing, it can seep into the house and come down the walls or it can cause the anchors holding the gutters to break, sending the entire structure tumbling down. Cleaning the gutters regularly is, therefore, one of the essential chores at the beginning of autumn. Just be careful manipulating the ladder, as there is great risk of leaning too far out and falling down.
We hope that these tips will help you prepare your home for this autumn. Since water damage is one of the most costly catastrophes that can hit your household, little caution and prevention on your side could not hurt. More often than not, a thorough inspection will be more than enough to introduce a dryautumnal, homely atmosphere.