Did you know that a winter storm can cause just as much damage as a hurricane or tornado? Don’t believe it? Well, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, since 1980, 16 different winter storms have exceeded $1 billion in overall property damage. For homeowners, winter-storm related damage generates between $1 and $3 billion in uninsured losses annually, and if you factor in insurance payouts, that number is even higher. So, the big question is: how exactly can winter storms damage your home? Our Kiser Construction team is here with answers. Take a look.
Snow and Ice Accumulation
If you’ve lived in the Twin Cities area long enough, you know just how much snow can fall in a single winter storm. Back in 1991, we had over 28 inches in a single day! What typically happens when a substantial amount of unanticipated snow falls in a relatively short period? Homeowners haven’t prepared well enough and, unfortunately, things break. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the most common damages we’ve seen over the years:
● Caved-in rooftops due to heavy snow accumulation
● Fallen tree branches and holes in roofs
● Downed power lines (which are a major house fire hazard)
● Water leaks and structural corrosion
● Residential flooding as heavy snow melts
● Fires from improper generator use during storm-related power outages
Winter storms often bring below-freezing temperatures and, in severe cases, weather-related power outages. If you’ve ever shivered through a wintertime power outage, you know just how quickly your home can lose heat and, unfortunately, when it happens, your pipes can freeze up.
Frozen pipes can spell water damage disaster for your home if they’re not dealt with promptly because water expands as it freezes, which creates pressure inside the pipe. If the pressure becomes too much, it will force the pipe to spring a leak or burst completely.
Unfortunately, the pipes most susceptible to this type of damage are typically located in the lower levels of your home, such as the basement or crawlspace. You might not notice a leaking or burst pipe immediately, which gives water ample time to damage your home.
Ice Dam Formation
A winter storm may not cause immediate damage to your home, but the amount of snow and ice it dumps on your roof can absolutely do some damage in the following days or weeks. If your attic isn’t properly insulated, the snow accumulation toward the peak of your roof will slowly begin to melt as warm air from within your home heats the underside of your roof. As it melts, water will travel down your roof until it reaches the colder shingles toward the lower ends of your roof’s slope, where it will refreeze.
The process will repeat itself until a thick shelf of ice forms along the edges of your roof near the gutters. Unfortunately, this shelf of ice prevents further snow runoff from exiting your roof, which creates a large pool of water that can slowly seep beneath your shingles and damage your home. If you hope to avoid future water damage restoration, it’s critical that you contact an ice dam removal company to clear the buildup as soon as you observe ice dam formation.
Winter Storm Damage? Contact Kiser Construction Today
If your home has suffered damage after a winter storm, don’t hesitate to contact our team at Kiser Construction. We specialize in water damage, fire damage, and storm damage restoration, and we’re available 24/7 when you need us most. We’ve been serving homeowners throughout the Twin Cities for nearly 20 years, and we’re dedicated to serving as your advocates during this difficult and overwhelming time. To learn more about our services or to request a quote, give our team a call at 763-633-2010 or feel free to message us on our contact page.
If you are in need of emergency service following a storm, fire, or flood, we encourage you to reach out to us immediately on our emergency line at 612-518-8852.