The winter months can be daunting on a house! If your home is caught off guard during a freeze or heavy snow you can be in big trouble in no time at all! We have all heard stories of bursting pipes and collapsing roofs, and since repairs can be very costly—and inopportune around the holidays—it is best to be proactive and do things to prevent these accidents from happening during the cold!
In places that experience cold fronts coming in, you will know that pipes are prone to freezing and bursting—much like a can of soda left in the freezer! The best thing to do is to wrap the pipes in your home that are exposed to the elements with fiberglass insulation or heat tape! But if you find yourself in a sudden cold front without these things, then a few thick trash bags wrapped around the pipes will help you in a pinch!
If you find ice on your roof, it is always best to get it off as soon as possible and to use calcium chloride (Do not use regular salt, it will cause more damage!) when you remove it! Reason why is if you allow the ice to melt by itself you run the risk of the ice trapping moisture underneath it due to a warm roof! If this happens it can cause leaks and ultimately the failure of the roof! To prevent this whole situation altogether, you can seal your attic off during the winter months to keep your roof ice-free through the winter!
This last one is probably the most important, always make sure that your furnace is working properly! Have a qualified professional come in to clean and inspect your furnace to make sure that it is safe and not emitting any toxic gasses such as Carbon Monoxide! Also, invest in a Carbon Monoxide Detector as well! It is easy to forget about heater maintenance each year, but as you use your heater more and more through the season you’ll know it is best to know it is working at 100%!
The winter can be a hard season on your home, but it doesn’t have to be if you are proactive! Try to always be prepared for anything!