Going through the winter season can be a challenge for many homeowners. With the possibility of heavy snow and ice, winter can cause great damages to homes. In 2019, winter storms have caused $2.1 billion in insured losses in the United States, as reported by Munich Re. Awareness and preparation are key factors in mitigating potential risks to people and property during extreme weather conditions. Keep your family and home safe this cold season: follow these 5 winter safety tips.
Repair roof leaks
A leaky roof is more than just a structural problem. It can also pose safety and even health risks. In winter, a small roof leak can be critical for your entire household. To make sure you can rely on your roof to protect your home this winter, watch out for the signs of structure damage. The common causes of roof leaks include old age, broken or missing shingles, cracked roof vents, flashing damage, poorly installed skylight, and more.
Clean out the gutters
Your gutter system protects your home’s foundation by controlling the flow of rainwater and directing it away from the structure. When your gutters are clogged in winter, the trapped water can freeze, possibly causing flooding problems and damage to your home. Remove major blockages in your gutters by scooping or scraping out debris. For the final step, wash your gutters using water from a hose. This will dislodge smaller particles and leave your gutters clean and spotless.
Insulate your walls and attics
To keep cold air out, add insulation to your home. Walls and attics are perfect targets for an insulation upgrade. When choosing the type of insulation to install in your home, you should consider relevant factors, such as location, ease of installation, life cycle costs, and indoor air quality impacts. To seal air leaks around movable building components, like doors and windows, the Department of Energy recommends using weatherstripping in your home.
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Prune your yard trees
Before winter hits, it’s very important to clear your yard from weak or low-hanging tree branches. Your yard trees could get weighed down with snow or ice and fall on your house structures and power lines – or your neighbor’s.
Wrap exposed water pipes
Among the most common household problems in winter is burst pipes. When plumbing pipes are left exposed to the cold weather, the water inside can freeze and become ice. This causes the pipe to expand and burst open. According to HomeGuide, fixing a burst pipe can cost you between $400 and $1,500, while the water damage clean up and repair may add $1,000 to $2,000 in costs depending on the extent.
Protect your plumbing system from the cold weather by applying insulation sleeves to pipes located in unheated spaces. This added layer of insulation helps ensure the smooth flow of water in your home throughout the cold season.
Avoid a costly plumbing emergency in your home by getting regular plumbing checkups and maintenance from a licensed plumber. Find a trustworthy plumbing company in your local area to partner with, today!