How the Winter Weather Affects Your Roof

Prepare for Your Roof for Winter

At Landmark Exteriors, we know that winters in Connecticut can be harsh and long. Not only will your snow boots take a beating, but so will your roof. With winter approaching quickly, now is an excellent time to go over the many ways the winter weather can affect the strength and structure of your home’s roof.

Wind Damage

Winter storms generally are accompanied by gusty winds. Strong winds can damage the roof by ripping shingles off. Ice and snow lying on the roof weaken the shingles, causing them to become loose and brittle. High wind can also knock branches from trees onto the roof or cause low hanging branches to bang the roof in the wind. These branches can easily remove shingles and puncture holes in your home’s structure.

Snow And Water Damage

If you live in an area where it snows consistently during the winter months, the snow can build up for days onto the roof. Snow becomes very heavy over time and can cause the roof to cave in completely. Snow also melts, and depending on the shape of the roof could be problematic as well. Water from melted snow could drain and seep into cracks of the roof and under shingles causing mold and rotting.

Proper Winter Roof Maintenance

Before winter begins, it is always a good idea to trim any low hanging tree branches away from your roof. Gutters should also be inspected to make sure they are clear and can drain melting snow adequately. You can easily hire a professional roofing company to inspect the gutters and look over the roof for any loose shingles or weak spots and have them repaired before more significant issues develop. 

After a bad winter storm season, your roof should be inspected thoroughly again to make sure no damage occurred. Prepare your roof for winter now and enjoy all the season has to offer instead of worrying about repairs. 

Landmark Exteriors Home Care division provides an extensive list of services to keep your home in great shape. From roof maintenance to gutter and siding repair, we can help prep your home for winter now before snow hits! Contact us today to set up an appointment. (203) 838-3838

How to Match Your Roof With Your Siding

It’s no surprise that homes are expensive, and with such an investment, we want our homes to look good inside and out. Finding the right combination of exterior colors isn’t always easy, but it is crucial to keep your home’s exterior looking cohesive. 

Choosing a Roofing Color

When selecting a roofing color, you want it to pair nicely with the siding of your home. The architectural design of your home is one of the most important factors to think about, as well as what kind of statement you want your home to make.

Here’s a list of tips and suggestions to help get you started:

  • Lighter siding colors paired with a lighter roofing material will help make your home appear larger and more expansive.
  • Lighter colors used on siding and roofing help exemplify architectural features.
  •  In general, medium tones paired harmoniously with siding and roofing will look good with almost every style of home, while not overpowering architectural details.
  • A robust and dark roofing color paired with a more moderate siding tone will create a strong balance to the home.
  • When wanting to blend the exterior colors of your home, using a light to moderate siding paired with a darker shade of the same color for the roof, the house will have a beautiful, finished look.
  • Using complementary colors typically looks better than matching the siding and roofing colors exactly.
  • Newer, contemporary homes look better and more intensified with varying tones of black and gray. It’s also good to make sure your gutters/trim don’t clash but help exemplify the colors you choose for siding and roofing.

Siding can dramatically boost the appearance of your home. Landmark Exteriors offers a variety of siding applications from horizontal to vertical siding, in various wood species and cuts. Our materials can be left unfinished to patina, or it can be installed pre-primed to be finished at a later date. Contact us today to turn your vision for your home’s exterior into a reality.

Replacing Rotted House Trim

If you’ve noticed that the trim on your house has begun to rot, then it’s time to repair the damage before it gets worse. However, it is essential to work with a qualified company such as Landmark Exteriors to ensure the job is done correctly. 

Signs You Need New Trim Boards

When we check our homes for damage, trim boards are probably not one of the first things that come to mind. Here are some signs to help you recognize if you have your trim boards are rotting: 

  • Boards have become swollen
  • Boards are breaking or sagging
  • Water seeps behind trim boards when it rains
  • Fungi or moss is growing on the trim boards
  • Wood is darker than the rest of the wood
  • Trim wood is cracked, bubbling, or peeling

If you have noticed any of these signs, it’s best to call upon the help of a professional who can thoroughly inspect the damage and properly repair it. If your trim work is not correctly installed or additional damage is ignored, you will find yourself facing the same problem again. A professional company will not only repair the damage but adequately assess the job to ensure that all necessary repairs are completed. With the help of Landmark Exteriors, you can quickly reduce moisture infiltration, have rotting trim replaced, and even add gutters to your home if necessary.

Professional Trim Repair

When you work with an experienced professional, you can rest assured that your home will be thoroughly inspected at the edge of your roof before any further action is taken. This is important because the trim boards on your house are not just for decoration. On the contrary, they help reduce moisture infiltration, which in turn protects wood that has been used for framing and roofing. If you ignore the problem, then you will face far more extensive repair work in the future.

With the help of Landmark Exteriors, you can get your leaky roof repaired, repair damaged siding, and replace your rotten trim. All of these fixes are necessary to ensure your house will last for many years to come. Do not let mold and fungus take over your home; especially when there is qualified help is just a phone call away.

How to Prep Your Roof for the Fall

Fall in Connecticut is one of the best times to enjoy outdoor activities, not to worry about home maintenance. Leave the fall clean up to the professionals! The best way to prepare your roof for everything fall may throw (literally and figuratively!) at it is to have your roofing professional perform the following tasks:

Remove Debris

You’d be surprised what debris can get caught up in your gutters. It’s important to have all tree branches, plants, toys, and any other debris removed from your roof. Even small objects can cause a major problem with your roof and gutters. Take time now, before the weather drops and snow comes! 

Clean Your Gutters

After you remove any debris, your gutters should get a good cleaning so they can keep doing their job without any obstructions. When our gutters become full of leaves or other debris, this clog can cause water to pool on your roof. This moisture can eventually run the risk of seeping under your shingles and entering your home. Without debris, your gutters will keep flowing and have no issues when rain and snow come their way.

Check for Leaks

If your attic is properly insulated, you may think that you’re defended against leaks. However, you should still take time to check for leaks. Not only can leaks left unfixed cause you to have to spend more on repairs, but they will pose a threat to your home’s structure. Have your roofing professional check for leaks now, and avoid having to do the repair in the colder, snowy months.

Schedule an Inspection

The summer sun can make your roofing materials swell, shift, or even crack from the heat. It’s best to get an inspection as the weather starts to cool off to ensure you won’t encounter any problems during months of snow, ice and harsh temperatures. A professional inspection this autumn is essential for identifying areas of damage. Contact our professionals at Landmark Exteriors to schedule a maintenance and inspection appointment.

Top Things to Do This Fall in CT

Saying goodbye to summer is always sad, but fall has so much to offer — especially in Connecticut! Here are a few of our favorite local activities for you and your family this autumn:

Take the Kids Apple Picking

To find the perfect apples to bake with and much on this season, try picking your own! Your little ones will have fun picking their very own apples, which may just inspire them to snack on something healthy, too! Here are our top locations nearby:

Pick Your Own Halloween Pumpkin

No matter the age, everyone LOVES pumpkin picking! You can go searching for the perfect pumpkin to take home and carve or place on your porch at these nearby farms and locations:

Attend a Fall Festival

  • For carnival rides, a challenging hay maze, food, live entertainment, and more fall activities, attend the New Canaan Nature Center Fall Fair from October 4-5.
  • Enter in a bit of friendly competition at the Greenwich Historical Society Fall Festival’s scarecrow competition, and enjoy great music and vibes while you work on October 12.
  • If you want to go for a long, relaxing drive and chow down on some of the best chowders in New England, don’t miss Chowder Days at Mystic Seaport from October 12-14! 

Go Antiquing

Fall has rustic vibes, which makes antiquing the perfect fall activity! Discover your new favorite decor piece, or short through artifacts from the past at the Fairfield County Antique & Design Center!

Visit a Haunted House

There’s nothing spookier than visiting a haunted house in the fall! For some serious frights, check out one of the most unique haunted traditions in New England at the Legends of Fear – Fairview Tree Farm, or visit Fright Haven, the largest and scariest indoor haunted attraction in Connecticut! 

Take a Hike

With crisp cool air and beautiful fallen leaves, Autumn is one of the best times of year to go for a hike in Connecticut. Here are some of our favorite places to get out and enjoy all that nature has to offer:

  • North End Norwalk River Valley Trail
  • Oyster Shell Park
  • Devil’s Den Preserve
  • Wilton Town Forest

Whatever fall activities you embark on this fall, we hope you enjoy all this season has to offer! 
While you’re celebrating the autumn season, let us prep your home for the cold weather that’s coming. Contact Landmark Exteriors for all of your home exterior maintenance, from roofing to siding and gutters!

3 Easy Decorating Tips for Fall

Let’s face it: nothing beats fall in New England. If you’re looking to invite the new season into your home, we’ve got a few of the top decor tips for you:

1. Celebrate the Harvest Season

Fall is one of the best seasons to utilize natural elements in your home. Whether it’s a casual woodsy texture, or going full-blown autumn and decorating with pumpkins galore! Add patterned throw pillows to your living spaces for a great touch that will tie your home together. There’s plenty of DIY fall wreath options that will spark your creativity, too. 

If you want more, try these outdoor tips to add the harvest season to your home: 

  • Line up gourds and pumpkins on your stoop or walkway
  • Stop at a local farmstand for fresh, color mums. Choose one or two colors.
  • Layer your fall display with a few hay bales.

2. Add Candles for Warmth and Light

Let’s admit it: one of the best parts of decor shopping is stopping to smell the candles. Adding different scented candles throughout your home is also one of the best ways to welcome the new season. Sprinkle fall scents in your bathroom, kitchen, living room, and bedrooms. Many candles also have a beautiful design and can also function as a decor piece!

3. Introduce New Colors Into Your Home

The best way to add fall colors to your home is to think of the changing of the leaves here in Connecticut. Crimson, burnt orange, yellow, and sage are great color choices to add to your home. 

Whether you pop in some new color by adding a new sign to the outside of your home, a colorful throw blanket or getting new place settings for your dinner table, you’ll be feeling fall in no time!

We hope you have fun decorating your home this season! With a new season comes time for home maintenance, as well. Before decorating your home for the new season, be sure to do an annual check on your home’s exterior.

 Through annual upkeep, you can avoid costly repairs and damage down the line. Our knowledgeable staff at Landmark Exteriors will answer your questions and set up a schedule for your specific needs. Call our office for details. (203) 838-3838

Why Your Roof and Utility Wires Are a Shocking Combination

Chances are you don’t normally spend your time thinking about different ways to be electrocuted. Utility wires, power lines, and service drops pose an immediate shock or even be an electrocution hazard if they touch your roof. When the conditions are just right, you and your family could be at risk. When it comes to inspecting your house to make sure your roof is safe, here are some things you need to know.

Power lines and shingles do not mix

The most common roofing materials in the U.S. today are asphalt shingles. These shingles offer many options; they are colorful, durable, and inexpensive. While variety is a great benefit, the chips that are in the asphalt’s color make for a bad scenario. If the chips make contact with the power lines, not only can the asphalt crack from the heat, but it could result in a shock or electrocution of your roof. In theory, asphalt shingles are like strong sandpaper. They have ceramic chips that are sharp around the edges, and when that mixes with the sheath of the power lines that is particularly soft it could be extremely dangerous.

If push comes to shove, what is the worst possible outcome?

In order to understand the dangers of exposed wires, think about all the unencumbered electricity that is flowing through them. There are no fuses or breakers between the pole and service entrance so thus there is nothing to protect you or your family from being electrocuted if you come in contact with the bare wires.

The only thing that will protect the house is the ceramic chips because luckily they are not flammable. But underneath the ceramic is. The bare wires that are touching the shingles may not start a fire today or tomorrow, but it will only take one breeze or one specific movement that will let the neutral touch the hot. If this happens things will go from bad to worse very quickly.

If something does happen then who is responsible for the repairs?

Normally the service drop is both maintained and owned by an electric company, so when a power line comes across a roofline the responsibility could be on them to make sure it gets fixed. Homeowners should call their utility company to report a down wire and to report an accident if necessary.
For more information, or to schedule an appointment with one of our qualified roofers, contact Landmark Exteriors today!

Common Items That Clog Your Gutters

Properly installed gutters help prevent landscape washout, termite infestation and undermined driveways, patios, and walkways. However, every home’s gutters will become clogged. Cleaning your gutters may seem like an unpleasant or pointless task, but it is one of the most important aspects of home maintenance. Here’s what you need to know:

Why Gutter Cleaning is Necessary

If your sink was clogged, would you call a plumber? The same goes for your clogged gutters. Cleaning your gutters and removing any debris helps to avoid large costs down the road. 

You might be thinking, ‘well, I looked up my gutters, and I don’t see anything!’ You’d be surprised what can be caught up in your gutters out of eyesight. The best way to ensure your gutters are clear is to hire a roofing professional every six months. Ultimately, gutter cleaning is necessary to ensure no damage occurs to your home, especially your roof. Here are some of the items you may not expect us to find when cleaning your gutters:

1. Silt and Leaves

Silt is essentially dirty and other tiny particles, including leaves, that build up into a soil layer at the bottom of your gutters. Without climbing on a ladder and going up to take a look, you may not notice silt in your gutters, but leaves are easier to see from the ground. Silt is one of the most harmful build-ups for your gutters, as it can cause your gutters to clog and lose the ability to properly drain the water completely. Instead, water will trickle down the trap from the roof.

While silt is one of the most dangerous conditions for your gutters, leaves are probably the most frustrating. As mentioned, they can be easily seen and can ball up to clog every part of your gutters.

2. Living Plants

Your backyard isn’t the only place for a garden to grow on your property. If silt gets caught in your gutters, they will become the perfect environment for plants to grow. While this doesn’t typically sound like a bad thing, it’s not an ideal situation for the structure of your roof and your home.

3. Tree Particles

Living in an area with abundant trees is an excellent way to cool down your home and add to your landscaping, but pieces of those trees may pose a problem for your gutters. Tree branches, seeds, and flowers can all easily become lodged in gutters.

4 Animal Nests

Birds, squirrels, mice and other small wildlife are all adorable, but what they can do to your gutters is not so cute. These critters can make nests in your gutters because they are enclosed and usually have materials ready to use.

5. Toys

If you have children practicing sports in the backyard, it may not come as a surprise that sports balls and toys can make their way up to your gutters. These items may be invisible from the ground but can cause bad clogs if maintenance isn’t performed.

We’re all guilty of it – waiting until something becomes a problem before we take action. Preventative maintenance helps you avoid costly repairs, and our experts at Landmark Exteriors will take proper care of your home’s needs. To schedule your next appointment, contact us today!

How Your Roof Affects Your HVAC System

Your HVAC unit works to make your home comfortable and cool by squeezing the humidity and heat out of the air. If your system is continuously struggling to cool your home, and your energy bills are skyrocketing, then your roof might be the one to blame. There are a few ways your roof can make your HVAC work harder than it is supposed to:

Heat Absorption

If you’ve ever worn dark clothes outside when it’s 90 degrees outside, you know how your dark roof feels. Darker colors absorb and hold in more heat compared to lighter colors. If your roof has dark asphalt shingles, then it will absorb and trap the heat in the attic space. Then from your attic, the heat presses into your living spaces trying to find somewhere else to go. As a result, your air conditioning unit works to try to keep your home cool.

One-way heat transfer

Heat will naturally transfer into your home through the roofing materials, causing your AC to work harder. Warm air can also build up inside the attic space from the outside temperatures. The best way to keep this from happening is to invest in new roofing materials. Your nest options is a roof that not only reflect the outside heat, but that will also release the heat that is trapped inside. Re-emissive metal roofs do both by releasing the absorbed solar radiation from your attic along with reflecting the sun’s rays on the outside.

Invest in a radiant barrier

If the ducts for your HVAC system have to run through your attic or a crawlspace, then a radiant barrier will help save you some money. Due to the exterior heat that is suffocating your attic, your ducts could lose cold air. When you get the right barrier installed on your ducts, the cooler air will remain unharmed by the heat. This will allow cold air to flow to the rooms you want it in.

Another thing to remember is to make sure that your attic ventilation is working correctly. If your ventilation is inadequate, then the heat will sit there. You can harm your HVAC unit this way, causing the need for an expensive repair or replacement. Your shingles may start baking from underneath and could crack.
Whether it’s a hand-nailed cedar roof, copper portico awning, unique tile installation or any other roofing project, the team of experts at Landmark Exteriors will work with you to create a superior roofing system and design that will exceed your expectations. If your roof needs replacing, contact us today to set up a consultation!

How to Make Your Yard Dog-Friendly

There’s nothing better on a sunny day than spending some time outdoors with your pup! However, before you let your pet roam free in your backyard, you should make sure it’s safe for them to do so. Here are a few simple ways to make your yard dog-friendly:

1. Keep Your Yard Fenced Off

Allowing your dog to run loose in an open yard can be problematic, even if your pet is the most well-behaved on the block. Dogs are easily frightened by loud noises that can send them running. You also want to protect your pet from other animals in the neighborhood, like stray cats or dogs, neighboring pets, and wild animals. So, be sure to fence in your lawn before you let your furry friend play outdoors!

Maintaining your fence and doing regular fence checks is another safety measure for your pet. If an area looks like it may be big enough for your dog to squeeze through, fix it immediately. Other questions you should ask yourself require thinking like your dog: can they jump over it? Can they dig out?

2. Create a Digging Area

Digging is second-nature to all dogs, and without a proper place to dig, your lawn will start to look like it has craters in it! A flower bed or newly planted garden is irresistible. However, you can distract your pup by creating a digging corner with fresh sand or use a child’s sandbox. You can bury treats or toys beneath the sand to encourage your dog to dig there. Be sure to find a cover for this area so local cats and other animals don’t use it to their advantage.

3. Leave Out Plenty of Water

It can be easy for your companion to feel dehydrated during a day of fun in the sun. Be sure to leave out a bowl of water and refill it often. Additionally, you may want to set up a baby pool or sprinkler hose for some extra fun. Many dogs enjoy splashing around in the water, and it will help keep them cool while watering your lawn!

4. Add Some Shade

If your pup is spending a lot of time outside, it’s important for them to have a place to cool off. Make sure you set up a shady spot where your dog can lay down and relax in between playing. This will prevent your pet from overheating. Try setting up a cabana, tent, or a lightweight blanket under a tree.

5. Be Mindful of Toxic Plants

When landscaping your yard, keep your furry loved one in mind. Some plants and trees can be toxic to dogs. 

Avoid putting the following plants in your yard:

  • English Ivy
  • Castor bean or castor oil
  • Mistletoe
  • Autumn crocus
  • Lilly of the valley
  • Foxglove
  • Tulip/Narcissus bulbs
  • Rhubarb
  • Chrysanthemum

Additionally, avoid planting the following trees:

  • Wisteria
  • Azalea
  • Chinaberry tree
  • Rhododendron

You can visit the Pet Poison Helpline for their Top 10 Plants Poisonous to Pets, and the ASPCA for their extensive list of Toxic and Non-Toxic Plants.
At Landmark Exteriors, we provide an extensive list of services to keep your home in great shape. Large or small, we take care of everything from routine maintenance items like gutter cleaning to emergency roof repairs. Need a home repair? Contact us today!