Making Sure Your House is Ready for the Cold

There are many things that can happen to your home if you don’t prepare for winter including leaks to pipes that freeze and burst. Pipes that burst are not just a terrible mess; they can cost you tens of thousands of dollars in repairs!

It is always good to have a check list to refer to for maintenance before the real cold weather strikes. Some important areas include:

ROOF: Clean out the gutters and ensure your roof drains are clear of debris, especially if your home has a flat roof.
ATTIC INSULATION: Ensure that your attic insulation and weather stripping on doors and windows is adequate and in good condition.
ATTIC ICE: Examine the attic for frost accumulation. If there is any frost you’ve got a real problem. Check roof for ice dams or icicles. Also, check for staining on the underside of the roof or ice dams on the roof surface.

Consult the website “About Your House” fact sheet Attic Venting, Attic Moisture and Ice Dams for more advice.
SNOW REMOVAL: Gather snow shovels and ice-melt supplies (clean, dry sand, too) and keep these nearby. Keep snow away from gas meters, gas appliance vents, exhaust vents and basement windows and window wells. Monitor outdoor vents, gas meters and chimneys for ice and snow build-up. (Consult with an appropriate contractor or your gas utility for information on how to safely deal with any ice problems you may discover.)

WINDOWS: Examine windows and doors for ice accumulation and cold air leaks. If the weather stripping is in poor condition, make a note to repair or replace.
MOISTURE: Monitor your home for excessive moisture levels. For example, condensation on your windows can cause significant damage over time and can cause serious health problems. Check for any signs of mold; if found take corrective action to clean up and replace such windows.

Refer to “About Your House” fact sheet Measuring Humidity in Your Home.

HOSES: Shut off your outside hose bibs and remove all garden hoses.
EMERGENCY KIT: Ensure supplies of emergency candles, flashlights, food and medical kits are kept on hand for weather related power outages. Ensure your whole all family knows what to do in case of an emergency situation.

Thanks to Glenn Duxbury & Associates-Building Inspection and Consulting for these great times I have kept on file for myself (or my husband :)) 
Ph: 604 524-2502