Winter is one season that makes you want to curl up inside with a warm cup of coffee and a good book. While the weather snows and blows outside, it’s only natural that you’d rather be tucked away inside. However, protecting your home from harsh winter elements is vital for making sure your home makes it through the season damage free. Because around the holiday season, the last thing you want to worry about is an insurance claim.
Follow these simple tips for caring for your home in the winter and you shouldn’t run into any problems when the weather decides to strike:
Winterize Equipment and Yard Furniture
Patio furniture, lawn mowers, and BBQs are all expensive purchases that can put you back hundreds of dollars a piece. Leaving them outside and unprotected in the winter is a mistake that can leave you devastated when the snow melts in the Spring.
- If possible, wipe down outdoor furniture and store in a shed or garage
- If you don’t have an indoor place to store things, cover them with tarps
- Garden equipment should be drained of oil and cleaned before storing indoors to prevent damage and rust
- Properly cover your above ground or inground pools and make sure there’s no way someone could fall in or damage the cover from the top
Replace Furnace Filters
Keep your home toasty, warm and allergen-free – replace your furnace filters once the weather starts to get cold to ensure you’re breathing clean air this winter.
- It’s recommended you change your filters every three months, so don’t forget to change them again when it’s time
- Try writing it down on a calendar or setting a reminder on your phone
- During winter months it will help you combat colds and flu if your home is filled with clean, filtered air
Remove Snow and Ice from External Vents
Chances are there are vents on your roof that provide ventilation. The problem arises when heavy snow and ice build up, blocking the vents and causing damage to your roof. On top of that, this leads to risks for your heating and cooling systems as extra pressure on these vents can create moisture problems like mold or rot in the wooden structures of your home.
- Using a shovel or brush, clear the accumulated snow away and chip at the ice
- If it’s not safe to remove the snow, don’t risk your safety trying to remove it and reach out to a professional
- Install roof vent covers to reduce the risk of damage during the winter months – just make sure you install them before the snow arrives
Remove Ice from Roof and Gutters
Leaving large chunks of ice on your roof and gutters can cause damage in the spring as the ice starts to melt. Shingles can be left broken and water can seep into your foundation. It can all be avoided by doing some preventative maintenance.
- Install de-icing cables around your gutters to prevent ice from being able to form in the first place
- If ice does manage to form, use a shovel or scraper to chip away at the accumulated ice, but be careful not to do more damage in the process
Keep Snow Away from the Home’s Foundation
Foundation deterioration and expensive repairs can be caused by water pooling around the base of your home. As snow melts, this can lead to some serious trouble to your home and your wallet… The solution is keeping snow as far away from the base of your home as possible.
- Grab a shovel and start digging a snow-moat around your home
- If this isn’t possible, consider paying attention to areas that are more prone to water damage – like basement windows and concrete steps
- Don’t exert yourself too much, and if you must, hire some professional snow removal help
The moral of the story is, keeping an extra close eye on your home during the winter months is important for ensuring you’re not surprised by damage when things start to thaw. Protect your home and make sure you don’t let winter wreak havoc on your property.