Saskatchewan's daily mean temperature is around -11.5 C (11.3 F) in December. Obviously, the risks of freezes remain very clear. But do you know how these temperatures can impact your home? Freezing weather can easily cause structural damage threats. These damages might prove costly. What can you do to protect the property when the cold threatens?
Start now to protect your home from this winter's chilly weather. The more security steps you take, the lower your chances of sustaining structural damage, burst pipes or any other problems.
How Cold Weather Affects Your Home
You built your home, in part, to insulate you from cold temperatures. However, because it's an insulating object, the home faces its fair share of freeze and damage risks. Some of these might include:
- Roof damage brought by high winds, snow and ice accumulation or falling objects.
- Foundation damage brought by moisture infiltration, ground shifts and the freeze/thaw cycle.
- Pipe freezes and ruptures resulting in water damage.
- HVAC and electrical system damage resulting from the heavy use of these systems.
- Fire threats brought on by using space heaters, fireplaces and radiators.
The better you prepare your home for winter, the lower your overall risk factors will be. So, your chances of having to file a homeowners insurance claim will likely drop. Avoid claims, and you might avoid rate increases, coverage losses and other penalties.
Preparing Your Home For Cold Spells
At times, it's hard to prevent every risk that extreme cold poses to your home. However, a few simple steps can help you reduce the chances of problems occurring.
- During good weather, clean debris off your roof and clean out your gutters. You'll make it easier for the roof to withstand further moisture or debris accumulation. Also remove growths and debris accumulating near the foundation.
- Check all water lines for signs of leaks or breaks. Repair these. Also take steps to keep the pipes from freezing when temperatures drop. Consider leaving a small stream of water running in exposed pipes. Or, wrap exterior spigots in an insulated material to help block out cold air.
- Track your energy or electricity use. These might become overburdened during times of heavy use. You want to balance strain.
- When lighting fires or using space heaters, keep them isolated. Don't place flammable items near burn areas. Use protective screens as necessary.
While you can't prevent every accident, you can help reduce the chances of one happening. It's up to you to take protective steps to keep your home safe this winter.