How summer can take its toll on your home
Tuesday, May 29 2018
It’s not just winter weather that can cause expensive damage to your home, summer can also bring with it damaging weather. Although heavy rain and big storms are the first things that most people will think of when it comes to weather damage to a property, the sun and extreme summer weather can be just as damaging. In fact, there are a number of big issues that can strike your home during the summer months. This is why regular checks and maintenance at all times of year are so vital.
Flash flooding can also be an incredibly serious issue during summer months with floods in 2015/16 estimated to have caused £1.3bn worth of damage. Often the dry weather during summer months can drain all of the moisture from the ground, making it incredibly hard and dry. This means that when there is an unseasonal deluge the ground finds it difficult to absorb such a large quantity of water in a short space of time. The unfortunate result is flash flooding, with the build-up of surface water unable to drain away and subsequently pooling and causing damage. Many people would assume that winter is the only time that flooding strikes, when the highest levels of rain traditionally fall. Yet some of the worst floods in recent history in the UK have actually happened during the summer months, for example, the summer floods in Gloucester in 2007.
The summer months are also the time when plants and trees are most actively growing, heightening the chances of them causing structural damage to your property. Tree roots are a big cause of subsidence damage as when they grow very close to a building they drain moisture and change the ground’s composition. This can mean that the foundations become unstable and large cracks can appear in walls. This structural instability can be incredibly costly to repair, as well as making a future sale of your property and the obtaining of reasonably priced insurance much more difficult. Therefore trees and plants that are in close proximity to your home should be carefully monitored and not allowed to grow too tall. Sometimes it is necessary to remove them in order to ensure the future stability of your home.
Paintwork, woodwork and plaster damage
Continued warm weather and bouts of sunshine can also spell trouble for your paintwork and woodwork, especially wooden doors and window frames. Warm, dry temperatures can cause paint to crack and peel, making your property look rundown and also placing it at higher risk of further damage. The dry weather can also lead to cracks in external plaster and even result in it crumbling away. You should, therefore, take the opportunity when the weather dries up in the spring to touch up your paintwork and ensure it is ready for the approaching warm weather.
Flat roof damage
If your home has a flat roof then you will need to pay particular attention to it during any bouts of hot weather, especially if it is of traditional felt and timber construction. This is because as it ages, a felt roof can blister in the hot weather and then become brittle. As a result, stress can be placed on vulnerable points of the roof, such as the edges, up stands, pipes, gullies and skylights. This could lead to splits and leaks and ultimately result in you having to replace the entire roof earlier than planned. If the damage is noticed quickly it can be suitably patched, extending the life of the original structure.
For all of the reasons discussed above, regular property maintenance is vital whatever month of the year you are in. Keeping on top of small issues often means you can prevent big damage from taking place in the first place. This can save a huge amount of money in the long run and ensure your home stays in the best possible condition.