Colourful leaves and cooler temperatures are a sign that winter is on its way. Harsh winter winds, freezing temperatures, rooftop snow and ice build-up can cause damage to your home. Water damage from ice and snow melt is the most common winter-related disaster Canadian homes face, but it can be prevented with a few simple steps.
We spoke with Darren Gradus, CEO of Canada Restoration Services, a nationwide restoration company, about how to winterize your home to protect it from water damage in the winter.
Look at your house from the top down
To begin protecting your home from winter water damage, start with your roof.
“Everything’s coming down now,” says Gradus, referring to falling leaves and sticks from trees above.
Make sure your gutters are clean, removing leaves, sticks and other debris so snow and ice can flow unobstructed. If gutters are clogged and water can’t get away, melting show will pool up and seep into your home. Gutter guards are a great way to protect your gutters from debris build-up.
Prepare for water backups
“Fall rain can lead to sewer backups and city line backups,” says Gradus. It’s recommended to install a backup valve and make sure your sump pump is in good working order.
Inspect for air leaks
Look for cracks or holes in the outside walls and foundation and be sure to seal them up. Make sure skylights have proper weather stripping to ensure snowmelt can’t enter.
Protect pipes from freezing
Keeping your home warm (at least 20 degrees Celsius) can protect your pipes. Maintaining heat in your home, even if you’re going away for a week or more, is vital.
“Pipes will freeze when the heat is turned off,” says Gradus. When you come back home and turn the heat back on, or when the temperature begins to rise, these frozen pipes will burst, causing a flood in your home.
Before the snow arrives, turn outdoor taps off for the winter, first allowing water to drain out. Outdoor pipes are most exposed to the cold weather and are the first to freeze.
Protect your home from the harmful effects of winter. Visit Canada Restoration Services‘ profile on our website for more information on how the company can help protect your home during the cold, harsh winter season.