MyKey Presents: Protecting Your Home Against Winter Weather HazardsNov 29, 2021
Winter has much of northern North America firmly in its icy-cold grip. At MyKey Global Accommodations, we know that this, unfortunately, and inevitably, will lead to some folks being affected by frozen pipes that burst, tree branches that damage homes, and a whole host of nasty surprises that that trickster Jack Frost has ginned up for us each year during these cold-weather months.
To help you avoid these potential events, MyKey has developed tips to help you be better prepared for what may come when the winter winds begin to blow!
Clogged gutters and downspouts.
If you haven’t already done so, clean out your gutters. Build up of leaves or other debris left inside gutters may cause snow and ice to pile up, which can then cause improper drainage of ice, snow, and rain from your rooftop. As temperatures fluctuate over the course of the day, and certainly from day to day, this could lead to ice damming too. Another good tip is to invest in a roof rake to help remove snow build-up.
Be sure to remove hoses connected to your home’s exterior faucets. If you can, turn the water source leading to them off from within the house, and then leave the faucet just slightly open to clear out the remaining water. Water left inside will expand once frozen, which could lead to any combination of a burst hose, faucet or pipe.
Never set your heater below 13° C (55° F) in the winter. In the event of loss of heat or extreme outdoor temperatures, leave a faucet on the main level of your home slightly open, allowing just a slow drip, so that water has somewhere to go instead of freezing in place and perhaps causing a pipe to burst. You might also consider protecting pipes in attics, basements, and crawlspaces with insulation to combat freezing temperatures. In all cases, be sure to know where your water shut-off valves are for your pipes in the event of a pipe breaking.
Trim trees of their dead branches.
Tree branches are highly susceptible to the harsh weather commonplace in winter. Any combination of ice, snow, and wind may cause tree limbs to snap. This can lead to damage to your home or that of a neighbor.
Now that we’ve talked about what the cold can do, let’s discuss how heat can also cause damage to your home.
Don’t put combustible items near heat sources. If you have a fireplace, space heater or wood-burning stove, for example, don’t leave things nearby them that could easily catch fire when coming in contact with a flame or perhaps just a hot surface.
Keep your eye on candles.
The holiday season in particular is a time for candles, candle-lit holiday meals, and pine or cinnamon-scented candles. Be sure to keep them away from flammable substances and always do a whole-house check to be sure all candles are properly extinguished before leaving home or going to bed.
A Complete Temporary Housing Solution
Taking these simple but effective precautions will help protect your home from weather-related damage – or worse – requiring you and your loved ones to be displaced until repairs can be completed.
We certainly hope that never happens, but if despite your best efforts something, unfortunately, does occur requiring you to obtain temporary living arrangements, we invite you to ask your insurance professional to work with MyKey. We’re the leading provider of insurance housing in North America and we work with some of the biggest names in insurance every day to assist policyholders like you. Our team of experts will assist you and your insurance company with finding you both immediate emergency accommodations and a custom housing solution that suits your unique needs for the long term. We make the entire process simple and stress-free with no upfront costs on your behalf. You just show up, unpack and get your life back to normal.