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Your home might be doing well in the aesthetics department, but is it as functional as you want it to be? Beauty is important, but if your home is guzzling energy needlessly, giving you higher utility bills, you’re probably not too happy. You might also wonder why despite your highly sophisticated indoor climate control system, you somehow still feel uncomfortable. If you want to improve your home’s energy efficiency and protection from the ever-changing weather, you consider investing in these three exterior projects designed to improve home functionality.
EXTERIOR IMPROVEMENT: Ensuring your home is functional is directly related to improving its protection against the elements.
Roof Repair or Replacement
Your roof plays a major role in your home’s energy efficiency. Because of that, faulty roofing can be responsible for heat loss and gain, reduced indoor comfort and even health and safety concerns. You might think your roof is in great condition because you don’t see any obvious leaks, but is it really?
Unless your roof has recently been inspected by a qualified and certified roof inspector, appearances can be deceiving — and here’s why.
If your home has taken a beating from weather disturbances, there’s a good possibility that it has sustained damage. On roofs, this can manifest as leaks of varying sizes. Sometimes, roofing damage can be so minimal that it doesn’t create an actual leak, but it can still worsen over time and cause you serious problems down the line.
Unfortunately, many water leaks go undetected. Doubly unfortunate is the fact that leaks don’t just affect roofing materials. As time passes, other parts of your home will also be affected, resulting in an overall weakening of the roofing system. This presents a safety concern for you and your family without you even realizing it.
To make sure that your roof is in tip-top shape, schedule a professional inspection. If the inspector notes areas of concern, make sure that you have these problems addressed as soon as possible. Don’t forget your roofing insulation! Poor insulation not only leads to higher energy bills but can also cause heat buildup that promotes deterioration in roofing components.
Gutter Installation or Replacement
Gutters may seem insignificant in terms of home functionality, but they are actually quite important. Tasked with directing water away from the roof when it rains, gutters are responsible for keeping moisture-related concerns at bay.
For instance, rain that is not properly channeled away from your home by your gutters can drench your landscape and driveway, seeping into the home’s foundation. This eventually leads to a weakened foundation, posing a threat to your home’s structural integrity.
Clogged gutters can also cause water to back up onto your roof. In time, the water will cause damage to the roof that’s significant enough to present a major safety concern.
CLOGGED GUTTERS: Leaves and debris in gutters put your home at risk of water damage.
To avoid costly home repairs, you need to be proactive about your gutters. Cleaning your gutters can be time-consuming, especially if you have to do it on a regular basis because of nearby trees that shed their leaves onto your roof.
Fortunately, there is a great solution to this problem. All you need to do is install a reliable gutter system reinforced with an equally reliable gutter guard. These simple devices ensure the system is in perfect working condition all year round, saving you a lot of time and effort cleaning your gutters.
Your siding plays a big role in your home’s appearance. As such, it’s imperative that your walls are fitted with the right siding if you want to grab attention for the right reasons. However, having the right siding installed on your home is not just about boosting aesthetics for your property–siding also impacts energy efficiency, and thus your energy bills.
FORM AND FUNCTION: Siding influences your home’s beauty and performance.
How do you know if you need to replace your siding? Here are a few ways to find out:
- Is your siding installed with insulation? If your siding was installed without insulation then there’s a good chance that your energy bills are higher than they should be.
- Is your siding insulation sufficient for your local area? Insulation may be present, but not sufficient. If your area frequently experiences extreme weather conditions, such as extreme heat or cold, then you need to make sure your insulation is suitable for said conditions.
- Is your siding still in good condition?. If the siding is old and worn down, there’s a good chance that portions of it are warped or brittle. If your siding is in poor condition, it’s not functioning the way it should. As such, it’s time to replace it.
Now, how do you choose the right siding?
If you decide to replace your siding, you’re in luck! These days, technology has enabled siding manufacturers to produce reliable products you can count on for all your needs. When searching for the right siding, make sure that you:
- Check product specifications. There are many siding products to choose from. As such, it’s important that you understand exactly what you’re getting. This will help you zero in on the best option for your home, ensuring you make the most of your investment.
- Check siding design. Siding is available in a range of profiles, making it easy to find an option that will complement your home’s existing design. Additionally, modern siding usually has molded backings and highly improved interlocking features for better structural stability and durability.
- Consider rigid siding. You can trust siding products today to be durable, but the more rigid an option is, the better its ability to withstand strong winds. If you live in an area that regularly experiences high winds, rigid siding is the way to go.
Improving your roofing, gutters and siding are just three ways you can have a more functional, secure and comfortable home. To make sure you’re getting the most of your investment, work with a reliable home improvement contractor who can provide you with high-quality products and services.
Rob Yeary owns Universal Roofing. An Indianapolis native, he spends his free time writing about the industry, sharing his experiences and knowledge through the company blog. Check it out for updates from Rob!