I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season. With small kids in my home it is a magical time of the year and I hope it was for your family too.
In my last post I talked about Cold Weather Driving Tips. We haven't seen a big snow storm yet, but take a moment and review those tips. Recently I drove over the pass to visit family in eastern Washington and there was plenty of snow on the roads. You never want to be caught in a snow storm unprepared.
This week I thought I would share a few tips for taking care of our homes during these cold winter months. No one wants to have an issue with their home ever, but when it is cold outside it is even more important to keep up with a few maintenance items to protect our plumbing, roofs and heating systems.
Let's start with some ideas for winterizing the plumbing:
Can you locate the main water shut off valve in your home? Ensure that everyone in your home knows how to turn off the water in your home so they can stop a leak immediately if needed.
Frozen water in pipes = broken pipes. If you have exposed pipes in your garage, insulate them.
Drain all water from outdoor faucets and sprinklers.
Drain garden hoses, roll them up, and store them inside.
Next let's think about the roof and gutters:
Replace loose shingles if needed.
Clean any moss off of the roof.
Clean the gutters and downspouts.
Inspect any trees that may have limbs hanging over or touching the roof.
Make sure the flashing around any chimney or vent pipes is tight.
Your heating system is going to be working overtime as the temperature drops. Here are some tips to make sure it is up for the task:
Have a heating professional perform a routine check of your heating system.
Vacuum vents and other heating components.
Replace the furnace filter as recommended by the manufacturer.
If you plan on using your fireplace make sure to have it inspected and cleaned if needed.
If you don't plan on using your fireplace ensure the damper is closed and airtight to prevent the warm air from escaping your home.
Hopefully by following some of these preventative measures we all have a warm cosy home to shelter us from the cold. Next time, I hope to share some emergency preparedness ideas to make an extended power outage tolerable. Have a great weekend, and Go Hawks!
Do you have any tips that I missed that you think are important? Please share them in the comments section below.
The bitterness of poor coverage lingers long after the sweet price is forgotten.
Joe Urvina is an insurance agent located in Gig Harbor, WA.