Snow to Slush to Rain: How to Waterproof Your Home

Vancouver isn’t known for endless, snowy winters, but once or twice, those heavy cold fronts do roll through. Mixing that melting snow with the frequent Vancouver rain leads to a very slushy mess — not only through the sidewalks and streets but all-around your home.

One of the most common hazards for any homeowner is water damage. Water not only leads to serious structural and foundational damage but can result in electrical issues or mold. Here are a few things you can do to ensure that your home is properly waterproofed and prepared for those extra wet months. 

Remember, when it comes to many of these home repairs, stay safe and hire a pro to get the job done right.

Regularly Check Your Foundation for Cracks

Water damage is extremely costly when it seeps into your foundation. That’s why it’s important to frequently inspect your home to check for any cracks or places where water can get in. If you do find a crack, get it properly sealed immediately. If you notice large, reoccurring cracks or bulging walls, that could mean that there’s already structural damage to your foundation, meaning you should get it evaluated by an expert.

Tip: If water is pooling around your foundation, that might mean your yard isn’t properly graded. For proper drainage, you want a gentle slope going from your home into your yard.

Keep Those Gutters Clean

Cleaning out your gutters isn’t one of those tasks anyone looks forward to, but it is essential. When a gutter becomes clogged, the melted snow and rainwater will build up and overflow, damaging the bricks and mortar on your outside walls and flowing down to your foundation. So make sure you get yours cleared, in good shape, and functioning properly.

Tip: To avoid water pooling around your home, direct your gutters away from your foundation and extend them into your yard. Also, direct your downspouts away from your driveway.


Ensure Your Windows and Doors are Properly Sealed

Leaking issues with your windows or doors are usually straightforward to fix. It typically comes down to your caulking, which might need to be repaired or reapplied. If the issues go past your caulking — maybe your windows or doors are getting outdated — consider upgrading. Modernizing won’t just improve waterproofing, but will improve your home’s aesthetics and energy efficiency.

Tip: Hold a lit candle close to the window seams on a breezy day. If the flame bends, it signals air movement pushing through the window from outdoors, which could mean areas of water leaks.

Get Your Roof Inspected

It’s recommended that you get a professional to inspect your roof twice a year: once before winter and once after. In these inspections, confirm there are no loose or missing shingles and that your flashing (metal seals) don’t have any gaps, cracks, or holes. If you have a chimney or skylights, also confirm that they’re properly sealed. 

Yes, the heart of winter isn’t the best time to consider roof repairs, but a maintained roof is crucial for the longevity of your home and should be on your to-do list when the weather does clear up.

Want to Make Sure Your Next Home is up to Standards?

If you’re searching for your new home — one that checks off any and all waterproofing requirements —  our expert Stilhavn team can deal with those details so that you can enjoy the excitement of the process. Browse our current listings and start planning your future havn!

Tags: Buyers, First Time Buyers, Guides, Homes, Waterproofing, West Coast Living