Mar 28

What Is This Terrible Winter Doing to the Exterior of My Home

Driving in different areas of the country, I have taken notice to a few things happening with this weather. One is the snow sitting on all the roofs, this will create an ice dam which is a wall of ice that forms at the edge of the roof. When heat from inside melts the snow on the roof, water runs down and refreezes at the roof’s edge. Eventually, the ice builds up and blocks water from draining off the roof. This, in turn, forces the water into your home and can cause thousands of dollars of damage in the interior of your home.

Even if we have no interior damage to our home or business our exterior paint may not do so well. Instead, it stands as your home’s first defense against the damaging effects of weather.

The most beautiful paint job may not hold to the devastating effects of a bad winter. Consider that the usual cycle of freezes and thaws we experience here in the Northeast before we are rewarded with spring, it means expansion and contraction of moisture. An exterior paint job that isn’t cracked, chipped, or peeling will form a barrier against moisture that reduces the impact of freezing and thawing. But when exterior paint is damaged, moisture in the form of cold rain, ice, and snow can get in between the paint and your home, even through the tiniest area and add to the damage that’s already there.

More and bigger entry points for water mean an increased likelihood of water damage as winter turns into spring. Temperature fluctuations that include very cold weather followed by milder temperatures can literally cause the paint to peel right off your home! As the wood or other materials under exterior paint expand and contract, the bond between paint and painted surfaces grows weaker. Lower quality exterior paints used by companies looking for big profit can crack, flake off, or bubble under the stress of rapid, intense temperature changes.

On top of everything else, frigid winter lows can even change the color of your exterior paint! In the coldest weather, dark colors of lower quality paint can look discolored, that is why a good quality paint like Sherwin Williams or Benjamin Moore is very important to be used. A company that spends a lot of time prepping your home is going to help you prevent these problems.

The number one answer to the damaging effects of winter weather on exterior paint is a superior paint job using top of the line exterior paints. As mentioned above, your home’s paint job is its first line of defense against the elements, but it can only fulfill that role if it’s firmly adhered to exterior walls and free from cracks, chips, and bubbling. This can only be done with the right prep job. Be wary of the company who comes in with a sprayer and spends little time prepping your home, you might get a very cheap paint job but in the end the cost is more.

At the minimum your home and business will need a good powerwash on the exterior of your home, including your deck, exterior paint, walkways and your driveway. All the corrosive salt and ice melting solutions have made its way into your driveway and the surrounding areas.

Spring will be here in a few weeks, now is the time to start planning an exterior powerwashing and to paint a peeling exterior. Make sure that the home is prepped properly, that is the key to a long lasting paint job. Be weary of the franchise operators who want to do a quick spray job without the proper prepping of your home. Make sure the mold is taken off your home before the home is painted.


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