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How can I prepare my home for winter?

Protect Your Pipes

When water freezes in your plumbing system, it can cause blockages which prevent water from flowing freely throughout the areas in and around your home. This can lead to a buildup of water pressure that can cause pipes to burst or break and become severely damaged. In order to prevent busted pipes, add extra insulation to exposed pipes and let your faucets slowly drip to prevent standing water from freezing.

READ MORE: How Do I Keep My Pipes From Freezing?

Clean Gutters

Cleaning your gutters before winter weather sets in is important for many reasons, but it may not be obvious that clogged gutters can actually cause foundation problems. When rainwater collects in gutters, it is transported to specific areas of your yard that prevent pooling. When water collects, it can not only damage your yard and cause added stress from muddy paws and footprints – it can also seep into the foundation of your home and cause structural damage. Cleaning your gutters is important year-round, but it’s a good idea to clean them in October or November before freezing temperatures set in to prevent slipping and falling on ice.

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Drain Water Hoses

It’s easy to forget to ensure your water hoses are not filled with water during the winter months when you rarely utilize them. Don’t forget this important step if you want to do everything you can to protect your home from winter weather. Drain water hoses to ensure water does not freeze and expand and cause blockages which can lead to busted pipes.

Add Insulation

Add insulation to your exposed pipes, outdoor water spouts and valves, and in your attic to prevent high utility costs and to provide a buffer from the freezing temperatures which can wreak havoc on your comfort level and your plumbing system. You can purchase insulation for your pipes water spouts at home improvement stores or hardware stores.

READ MORE: How Can I Protect My Home from Intruders?

Check for Damage and Leaks

Checking for damage and leaks should be on your rotation of home chores throughout the year, but it’s especially important to check for damage, holes, and leaks that can allow cold air to waft in, which can lead to rising utility costs and heating expenses, frozen pipes, HVAC system damage, and more. Do a thorough inspection of your roof, attic, crawl spaces, basement, and exterior walls at least once per month and more frequently during winter months if possible. If you notice cold drafts, seal any cracks and crevices and repair any damage as soon as possible. If you suspect damage to your plumbing system, call a plumber as soon as possible.  

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