Preparing Your Home for Winter Weather

There are few things more festive than waking up to a snow-covered landscape, but winter weather can also pose a threat to your home. As snow begins to accumulate, it is important you know what parts of your home need protection.

During a winter storm, one major concern is ice dams, which are composed of ice that has accumulated at the lower edge of a sloped roof. As ice builds, it is not unusual for water to run down your roof and freeze again at the edge. As this continues, the ice prevents water from draining off the roof, forcing it into your attic or down the interior walls of your house.

Below are a few cold-weather tips to ensure your home is ready.

  • Keep an eye out for accumulation of snow on the downwind side or your roof. It is typical for blowing snow to collect in this area which can result in a damaged roof.
  • Remove any snow built up on basement stairwells, window wells and walls. Once the snow begins to melt, it can cause water damage and moisture intrusion in these spaces.
  • Make sure your attic is well ventilated. By keeping your attic at a temperature similar to that of the outdoors, you can minimize the possibility of ice dams forming.
  • Cover any exposed pipes with insulation sleeves or wrapping to slow the transfer of heat.
  • If any of your faucets are connected to pipes that run through an unprotected space, turn them to a slow drip.

By following these tips, you can be better prepared the next time a winter storm hits, keeping your home safe and comfortable throughout the cold season.