Protecting Your Home from Extreme Weather – Fall/Winter Edition

Winter Prep for the Exterior of Your Home

When temperatures drop dramatically and the snow flies, you’ll be glad to have taken these measures to safeguard your house.

  • Remove leaves, sticks and other debris from gutters, so melting snow and ice can flow freely. This can prevent ice damming, which is what happens when water is unable to drain through the gutters and instead seeps into the house causing water to drip from the ceiling and walls.
  • Gutter guards prevent debris from entering the gutter and interfering with the flow of water away from the house and into the ground.
  • Ice, snow and, wind could cause weak trees or branches to break free and damage your home or car, or injure someone walking by your property.
  • Broken stairs and banisters can become lethal when covered with snow and ice.
  • Use caulking to seal cracks and wall openings to prevent cold air and moisture from entering your home. Caulk and install weather stripping around windows and doors to prevent warm air from leaking out and cold air from blowing in.

Winter Prep for the Inside of Your Home

Frigid temperatures, snow and ice can wreak havoc on water pipes and tax heating systems. Ensure all your home’s internal systems are “go” for winter safety and efficiency.

  • If too much heat escapes through the attic, it can cause snow or ice to melt on the roof. Water then can refreeze, leading to more ice build-up—and may even lead to ice dams that can damage your roof. Well-insulated basements and crawl spaces will also help protect pipes. Consider insulating garages and other unfinished areas to keep pipes from freezing.
  • Furnaces, boilers and chimneys should be serviced at least once a year to prevent fire and smoke damage.
  • Check pipes closely for the presence of cracks and leaks. Have any compromised pipe repaired immediately.
  • Not only do residential fires increase in the winter, but so does carbon monoxide poisoning—so regularly check that your detectors are in working condition.

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