winter friendly

The end of fall/beginning of winter has been pretty mild so far, but as New Englanders know all too well, the next few months can be unpredictable. Christmas may have felt like early spring but February could see record-low temperatures. Each year it is important to be sure that your home is winter friendly in hopes of avoiding problems and costly repairs.

The following are a few tips to help keep your home winter friendly over the next few months:

  • Always clear your driveway and sidewalk of snow and ice. Salt when needed to keep the spaces safe for you and guests.
  • Drain outdoor hoses and clear the pipes of any standing water to help prevent pipes from freezing.
  • If you have pipes that tend to freeze, allow water to trickle from a faucet that is furthest from the main water pipe.
  • If your heater is in an unheated area you can wrap an insulation jacket around it.
  • If your home has direct vent furnaces and water heaters, snow needs to be cleared away from the vents in order for them to work.
  • Ice dams can wreak havoc on a home. An ice dam is when ice accumulates at the bottom of the sloped roof from water melting, running down, and then re-freezing-creating a dam. When the melted water can’t run off-it makes its way underneath roof shingles and into attics and down the insides of walls which can create costly damages. To help prevent ice dams from forming in the winter-clean out all of the debris in your home’s gutters.
  • Most roofs can bear the weight of heavy snow but if it begins to accumulate too much, hire a professional to clear off the roof to prevent it from collapsing.
  • Keep your home prepared with food, water, flashlights, batteries, and firewood if you have a wood burning stove, in the event that you lose power during a storm.
  • If you have elderly neighbors, check in with them and make sure they are okay or if they need assistance with any snow removal.

The winter can be a fun and beautiful time here in New England, so keep your home winter friendly and enjoy it! If you have any damage from snow, ice, or rain-contact your insurance company right away.