We’ve all seen the damage that tornados, hurricanes, or a polar vortex can do to a home or business. But extreme weather isn't limited to these types of weather systems. Did you know that lesser-known types of extreme or severe weather can also cause significant damage to the exterior of your home?
The terms severe weather or extreme weather typically refer to dangerous meteorological phenomena with the potential to cause social disruption, serious damage to properties, injuries and even fatalities. Keep reading to learn about the potential effects of extreme weather on your home.
Types of Severe and Extreme Weather
Severe weather comes in many forms. The type of severe weather most likely to impact your property will depend on the region you live in and the weather patterns typically present. Common types of damage-causing severe weather include:
- Excessive precipitation; rain, sleet, hail or snow
- High winds
- Tropical depressions
- Dust storms
- Ice storms
Even wildfires are categorized as a type of extreme weather because they are typically propelled by dry and windy weather patterns.
Think about the list above: which of these patterns have you experienced at your property? Remember, while the exact weather pattern may vary, severe weather may strike anywhere.
Read on to learn more about some of the more common damage causing severe weather patterns and the potential effects of extreme weather on homes and businesses.
Extreme Weather: Fluctuations in Temperature
Extreme and severe weather patterns oftentimes bring with them drastic fluctuations in temperatures. These temperature swings may be characterized as either extreme heat or extreme cold. These patterns may be detrimental to human health and property. While these patterns are not new, there is a large body of evidence suggesting that extreme fluctuations in temperatures are increasing in frequency due to climate change.
As a result of climate change, we are seeing a weakening of normal jet streams, giving us weather patterns that can change drastically in a few hours’ time. Climate change also brings more heatwaves and stronger polar vortex blizzards.
Cracking and Melting Siding
An obvious example of the effect of extreme temperatures is their impact on materials like vinyl siding. Have you ever noticed that you have “melting siding” on a portion of your home? In extremely high temperatures, siding may actually begin to melt. This typically occurs on vinyl siding that is across from modern, energy-efficient windows. This phenomenon is referred to as solar distortion and occurs when the sun’s rays are reflected from a modern window at a building’s siding. Extreme cold temperatures can be problematic too, as they may cause siding to crack.
Painted houses aren’t out of the woods either! If the exterior of your house is painted, temperature extremes can cause the paint to peel and crack. All of these effects are exacerbated by freeze and thaw processes.
Extreme Weather: Wind Damage
Climate change also means more and stronger wind events. High winds can also cause damage to your home’s exterior, including:
- Damage to the Roof
High winds can cause loose roof shingles to come off completely or loosen them enough so that water is able to seep through, causing interior damage.
- Damage to the Siding
High winds can also loosen or separate siding from the nails holding it to the house. When this happens, your home is left vulnerable to water damage.
- Damage from Falling Branches
High winds may also cause tree branches or, in some instances, the entire tree to fall on your home, causing major structural damage.
- Damage to Windows
Heavy winds that cause broken or cracked windows leave your home susceptible not only to the elements but also to intruders.
Extreme Weather: Hail Damage
Blizzards and ice storms are relatively common throughout large swaths of the United States. But when was the last time you thought about the potential effects of hail or a hailstorm on your home?
Hail is a type of precipitation that forms when raindrops freeze on their way to the ground. Unlike snow, which is made of much smaller moisture particles, hail varies in size; in some parts of the country, it’s not uncommon to have hail the size of golf balls!
Dents, Divots and Shattered Windows
Hail damage is pretty easy to spot. When hail hits an object, it generally leaves behind a dent or divot. But if the hail lands on glass, like a window or skylight, hail can crack or shatter the window. When striking rooftops, hail may cause shingles to crack, allowing water to seep through over time.
What may appear as minor hail damage, may lead to problems over time. For example, a hail-damaged roof may cause water to leak into your attic, allowing mold to grow over time. Unsightly hail damage to siding, metal roofs or cars may decrease the value of your property significantly.
Choose Rainbow International for All Your Recovery and Restoration Needs
Humans have taken a great deal of time to learn how to predict the weather but changing it or mitigating its effects are areas where we still have a lot of work to do! In the meantime, if your house experiences water or structural damage due to an extreme weather event, the experts at Rainbow International can help with the mitigation and restoration required to make your house a home again. Call us today at (855) 724-6269 or request an appointment online.
Need to replace a section of melted siding? Learn about siding replacement with help from our friends at Mr. Handyman. Like Rainbow International, Mr. Handyman is a member of the Neighborly® family of trusted home service brands.