Help your home’s exterior rebound

home-exterior

The seasons can be harsh on homes, and perhaps no season is more taxing on a home’s exterior than winter. Harsh winter weather can take a toll on roofs, gutters, landscaping, and just about any other part of the home that must face the cold head-on. The following are a few areas of your home that might need some help rebounding from winter now that spring has finally arrived.

“The last two winters in Connecticut has been really difficult for us,” said Tony Ferrigno, owner of Treeland in Bridgeport.

Landscaping

Landscaping also tends to take a hit in areas that experience harsh winters. Winter storms may damage trees, which can put a home right in the line of falling limbs or worse. Walk around your property to inspect for tree damage, removing any fallen limbs or cutting down any limbs that appear dead or that might eventually prove a safety hazard. In addition, check the grass for any dead spots that might have fallen victim to winter freeze, and address those spots when the time comes to revitalize your lawn.

Ferrigno said raking your lawn is better to do a few weeks into the spring because the grass is still dormant. When you rake, there is a chance you can rip out the grass that will come back healthy and green.

“Usually about 80 to 90 percent come back,” said Ferrigno.

Major lawn renovations should hold off until the fall. But, fertilizing and seeding the grass can happen now.

“The local garden centers are all professionals like ourselves,” said Ferrigno, who encourages everyone to go to a local garden center for their outdoor supplies. “They’re getting good advice and quality stuff.

Gutters

Gutters are vulnerable to winter weather, as strong winds may blow debris into the gutters or even blow the gutters off of the house.

Gutters should be cleaned prior to and immediately after winter to ensure they’re working properly and not backing up to the point that water can build up and damage the roof. Reattach any loose gutters and clear them of any debris left behind by winter winds.

Roofs

The roof is another area of your home’s exterior that may have been beaten down over the winter. Examine the roof for cracked, missing or deformed shingles that can allow water to enter a home and damage its interior.

“If you’ve had snow or ice damming removed from your roof over this cold and snowy winter, the roof along with gutters and leaders should be inspected by a qualified professional to ensure no damage has occurred from snow or ice removal,” said Mike DeDonato of DeDonato Building Contractors in Shelton.

Some roof damage is visible from the ground, but homeowners who just endured especially harsh winters may want to climb up on their roofs or hire a professional to get a closer look. Another way to determine if the roof was damaged is to go into your attic and check for water damage near roof trusses. Water damage indicates something went awry over the winter.

Walkways and driveways

Heavy snowfall or significant accumulation of ice over the winter can result in cracked or damaged walkways, driveways and porches. Some of this damage may have resulted from aggressive shoveling or breaking up of ice. Look for any cracks in areas that needed shoveling over the winter, as such cracks can be safety hazards and may even prove to be entry points into your home for water or critters.

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