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The Dangers of Winter on Your Foundation

The winter season has arrived and with it comes both joy and worry for homeowners. While a winter weather can provide a picturesque landscape for family gatherings, winter can be incredibly dangerous for a home’s foundation.

When the temperature outside reaches lower levels, the soil around the foundation of a home can become vulnerable to damage. Water that has made its way into the soil around the foundation during the summer can now freeze, creating a thick block of soil-ice. This soil-ice expands, pushing against a home’s foundation and causing it to crack and shift in certain areas. This can be especially dangerous if the foundation is already weak and made of materials that are not able to withstand the harsh winter temperatures.

Ice dams are another problem during winter months. They form on the roof due to snow and ice that build up on the roof and prevent runoff water from properly draining away. This water will then freeze in the gutters and on the edge of the roof, collecting more and more snow and ice in the process. Improvements need to be made, such as adding insulation in the attic that will prevent melting snow from collecting and running to areas where dams form.

The cold weather that accompanies winter can also cause water pipes to burst due to the freezing temperatures. If pipes freeze and burst enough, it can lead to significant flooding in the home. All pipes, both inside and outside the home, should be well insulated during the winter months to ensure that the pipes will not freeze and burst.

Another danger of winter for a home’s foundation is wet soil. Heavy snowfall can lead to an oversaturation of the soil around the foundation, causing the soil to swell and shift. This can cause cracks in the foundation of the house and can lead to serious issues if left unchecked. Sealing any cracks before winter begins can help keep water out of the home, reducing the risk of damage from the wet soil.

Finally, high winds during winter can have a serious impact on a home’s foundation. Strong gusts can cause stress on the foundation, creating cracks and even forcing the entire foundation to shift. Sealing any cracks and ensuring that the house is well-insulated and sealed can help protect against damage caused by wind.

Winter can be a beautiful season, but it can also be dangerous for a home’s foundation. Homeowners should take the necessary steps to protect the foundation by insulating pipes, sealing cracks, and adding insulation in the attic to help prevent ice dams. With the right measures in place, homes can be protected and ready for the cold winter months.