Winters bring forth a multitude of problems as far as your property is concerned. From frozen and bursting pipes to flooding and damage to your wooden doors and windows, there would be a lot of things to tackle. Depending on how cold and harsh it can get, you can however take up safety precautions and engage elements that would offer a protective coating to the property.
Guarding Your Roof Against Snow/ICE Buildup:
Snow on the roof can create havoc. While the buildup is itself alarming, melting snow can get into the cracks and ridges of the roofs and freeze to cause more damage. You can however take these precautionary steps before winters arrive:
- Clean your gutters thoroughly in the late fall since clogged gutters will allow the ice to form under the roofline.
- Go for high end attic insulation that will keep your home warm but your roof cool. This reduces the damage caused by immediate temperature differences.
- Constant ventilation is important and should be properly placed across the attic area.
- Heavy snow can result in cracks and seepage of the roof. If the accumulation gets significant, hire a specialist to shovel down the weight.
Dealing with Frozen Plumbing:
- Plumbing lines and water pipes that are located in unheated crawl spaces and exterior walls will be a major concern if winters get harsh in a particular year. You can however:
- Disconnect all drains and hoses to the garden as they would be unnecessary during winters.
- Turn off the drainage leading to faucets on the outside and also open the faucet valves for the winter months to allow drainage.
- Turn off the sprinkler and use a compressor to blow out any water that might have remained in the lined. A dry sprinkler system will take less damage than a damp one.
- Seal the foundation vents of your windows and doors.
- Use foam insulation for all outdoor pipes.
- Ensure that you know the exact location of the cut off valve for the water distribution. This might come in handy.
- Use heat lamps, hair dryers, portable space heaters or electric heat tapes to dry off the moisture in exposed pipes.
- After the winters are over, check for any leaks that might have been created.
Taking Care of Furnaces, Fireplaces and Home Heating Systems:
- Clean your flues and chimneys and any stoves you might own.
- Deploy fire screen to guard against flying embers. Also, always burn seasoned hardwood to minimum buildup of creosote.
- Get your broilers and furnaces serviced before winters.
- Ensure that your space heaters are at a minimum distance of 3 feet from any flammable object, including bedding, furniture and windows.
- Change your carbon monoxide alarms and smoke batteries every six months.
- Don’t use the outside grill indoors.
- Keep the backup generator outdoors.
Taking Care of The Exteriors:
- Use ice repellant solution on outdoor porches, walks, steps and benches.
- Clean all down sprouts and gutters before the winters arrive.
- Go for freeze resistant wiper fluid for your vehicle. You can even spray it across the plumbing lines.
- Plant container plants that catch snow and cover all plants that might get damaged. You may also regularly sweep your plants off snow every morning.
- Spread rock salt, clay based kitty and sand across your walks and driveways.
- Don’t shovel too much
- Stay off the roof when it snows but get it checked once the winters are gone.