Protect Your Home Against Winter’s Rush

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – You’ve probably never thought of it this way, but your roof is to your home what a 300-pound football guard is to his team’s quarterback: the first line of defense against elements — in this case, the harsh winter weather — that would pummel it mercilessly if otherwise left unchecked.
Just like football players look for holes in their competitor’s defense, homeowners should first be on alert for missing shingles or deteriorated flashing (those metal seals around bends and joints on skylights and chimneys). More than 90 percent of roof damage occurs in these two areas, and spotting it early helps prevent bigger and more expensive headaches down the road.
“It really does make sense, financially, to perform inspections at least twice a year,” says Bob Tafaro, president and CEO of GAF, North America’s largest roofing manufacturer. “The best times are in spring, after severe weather hits, and then again in fall before the temperature and wind become too brutal.”
Continuing the football metaphor, here are some more tips from the experts:
Know Your Opponent
Especially given the crazy weather we’ve been having, you’ll want to examine the roof edge for wind damage, weaknesses or rusted nails, and handle repairs before the winter weather hits.
Next, be on the look-out for any spots indicating mold, algae and mildew growth — especially if there’s debris on your roof. (Hint: telltale signs include dark spots and discolored shingles.)
Call the Right Play
By “debris,” we particularly mean piles of wet leaves, sticks and small branches. None of these are your roof’s friend.
In fact, not only can they cause water to back up and flow under a roof causing rain or ice dams, but they’re also a shelter for pests eager to eat through your home’s top. So, routinely clean all gutters and drains, make sure the gutters are securely fastened, and check that downspouts point away from your house.
What to do should you discover damage? If you’re at all interested in prolonging your roof’s life, it really does pay to consult a professional roof contractor who is insured and uses quality materials. A free service that makes finding one in your area easy can be found at www.gaf.com.

Block Winter’s Rush From Sacking Your Roof

Blue 42! Blue 42! Hike!

Get ready. Like a 280-pound defensive end seeking the head of an opposing quarterback, winter will be rushing your home’s roof. And if you don’t make the right moves, your home will get sacked!

You’ve probably never thought of it this way, but your roof is to your home what a 300-pound football guard is to his team’s quarterback: the first line of defense against elements – in this case, the harsh winter weather – that would pummel it mercilessly if otherwise left unchecked.

Winterization Tips for Healthy Skin

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<p>(<a href=NewsUSA) – Winter’s harsh winds and dry indoor heat can leave cheeks looking less than rosy.

But winter doesn’t have to mean looking pallid and dull until spring. “You can take steps to keep your skin clear and healthy through the winter,” says Dr. David Colbert, founder and head physician of NY Dermatology Group. “For example, moisturizing daily with a thick lotion, like one made from shea or white petrolatum, can help restore and protect dehydrated skin.”

Some of Colbert’s suggestions challenge conventional wisdom. Believe it or not, you don’t need to wash your torso, arms and legs every day. In fact, soap can strip your skin of natural moisture. “Wash your face, hands and feet with soap no more than once daily,” said Colbert. “Rinse the rest of your body with warm, not hot, water -; sweat dissolves in water, so you don’t need soap to come clean.”

Harsh winter weather coupled with cold and flu season can trigger the flaring of chronic skin conditions. People who are prone to cold sores might see flare-ups during the winter months, so they should keep an over-the-counter product on-hand to relieve pain. Colbert recommends his patients use a moisturizing product like Nexcare Cold Sore Treatment to relieve drying and cracking associated with outbreaks. This topical treatment combines Microvex, a non-greasy emollient derived from tropical oils, with benzocaine and allantoin for fast pain relief and lip protection.

Colbert also recommends that his patients reduce their outdoor exposure. “If you must go outdoors, use scarves, hats, masks and mittens or gloves to limit skin exposure,” he adds. “For extra protection, apply a petroleum-based product to your lips. Using a sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays also helps prevent skin damage.”

Indoors, Americans should try running a humidifier when moisture levels in their homes drop below 60 percent. Humidifiers make rooms feel warmer than heat alone and prevent skin from drying out.

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can help skin stay youthful. People might not hydrate as readily in the winter months, but bodies need water to flush away toxins and stay moisturized. Drinking herbal tea or other hot fluids can fulfill daily water requirements. Activity improves circulation to the skin, creating a healthy glow. A brisk walk, for 20 to 30 minutes three times weekly, can improve skin’s appearance.