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Let It Snow! 5 Expensive Winter Problems to Avoid

Winter landscapes laden with snow are beautiful to view from the cozy warmth of your home, but snowy conditions can be the cause of expensive damage to your residence and property. Homeowners should always keep in mind that the water content in snow and ice is very heavy and can put additional stress on structures and trees. A few simple actions can help to minimize the risk of damage. Here are a few measures you can take to prevent damage from snow and ice that will help you avoid expensive repairs.

Roof Damage

Before the snow season arrives, clean your gutters to prevent backups of melted snow that can create “ice dams” that can damage your roof. When large amounts of snow accumulate on the roof, remove it by using a snow rake or by calling a professional to remove it. This action will prevent the weight of the snow from causing cave-ins.

Top Dog Roofing says there are five signs that you may need roof replacement or repair:

  1. Missing pieces in the asphalt of your roof
  2. Dents or bruising on shingles resulting from hail damage
  3. Loose, cracked or broken shingles
  4. An accumulation of roofing granules in gutters
  5. Leaky roof systems caused by wind damage

Tree Damage

A few inches of wet, heavy snow or ice accumulation can cause large branches to fail and crash into windows, roofs and decks. You can avoid the risk of this type of damage by inspecting your trees carefully before the winter weather arrives. Trim back branches that hang over the roof or near windows. Remove damaged branches that are likely to fall.

Frozen, Cracked Plumbing

Bitter cold can also cause a plumbing problem, freezing the water in pipes, which can cause cracks in plumbing and resulting water damage to your home. You can prevent these problems by carefully inspecting visible pipes before the harsh weather arrives and have repairs done by a reliable contractor. You can install “heat tape” to pipes in attic and basement areas to prevent freezing. You can also open the tap to allow a small trickle of water to keep moving through the pipes to prevent freezing.

Clogged Chimneys

If you enjoy a fire in your fireplace during cold winter weather, ensure that your chimney is free of flammable debris by having it cleaned by chimney professional. A blocked chimney can cause hazardous carbon monoxide fumes to back up into your home or can cause a fire to start that damages the interior of your home and can be a threat to your family’s lives.

Repair Outdoor Steps and Handrails

The steps to your home may be cracked and uneven, making them a hazard when they are covered with snow and ice. These problems can also undermine the installation of handrails, making them wobbly and dangerous to use. Check these issues before the snow falls, so that your neglect is not the cause of an accident that could lead to an expensive lawsuit.

More Tips

  1. Check your Fire Extinguishers and Smoke Alarms (replace batteries)
  2. Check caulking and seal any gaps that could allow air or water to infiltrate.
  3. Don’t forget to weatherize your car as well as your home i.e. check washer fluid, antifreeze, oil, tires, etc.
  4. Put an emergency kit in each car.
  5. Disconnect hoses from outside faucets where water can freeze and crack the hose or even damage the faucet itself.

Smart homeowners understand that the harsh conditions of winter can result in increased damage to their property. They anticipate the potential damage and take action to minimize the risk. The areas mentioned in these tips are among the top problems that generally develop during or after winter snowstorms. If you manage these issues, you will be able to avoid unnecessary expense.

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