Water damage to your home is expensive to repair and can be extremely hazardous to your family’s health.
Fall and winter bring cold, damp weather, which can freeze pipes and soak through poorly sealed openings.
To protect your home and family, spend some extra time waterproofing the house well before the first freeze hits.
Here are 4 areas that need attention.
To waterproof a basement, first, you must fix any floor cracks that could be letting moisture in. Then you need to reseal the floor and all the walls.
Once those steps are complete, you will likely need to invest in a sump pump to prevent water damage during the rainy season.
Basement waterproofing can be complicated, which is why many people hire professional contractors for this job.
Waterproofing and sealing external doors is an important project, especially if you live in an area that regularly floods.
Apply a bead of exterior silicone caulk between the door frame and exterior wall. You can also place some weatherstripping between the door and the frame if there are any gaps.
Weatherstripping won’t withstand a major flood, but it should stop a few inches of rain as long as it is applied correctly.
In many older homes, windows were created by simply cutting holes in the house wrap as the structures were being put up.
While that practice can save contractors time and money, it results in leaky windows. Luckily, minor leaks can usually be patched up with some all-purpose caulk.
At least once a year, apply a fresh bead of caulk around any windows letting in moisture.
A leaky roof will bring your life to a grinding halt, and this problem is unfortunately common.
If you don’t notice the leak quickly, the water can destroy your ceiling, flatten your insulation and increase your risk of a mold outbreak.
For a smaller leak, you might be able to patch the hole by applying a thick bead of roof sealant.
If the opening is larger or there are multiple leaks, then you should immediately contact a roofing contractor. Otherwise, the result could be thousands of dollars in damage.
If you believe that you might have water damage in your home, then you should immediately contact a company that specializes in water and mold remediation.
One of those companies can carefully remove all traces of water and eradicate any mold spores that have gotten into your walls and vents.
Anita Ginsburg is a freelance writer from Denver, Colorado. You can follow her on Twitter.