Protecting Your Home Before and After a Snow Storm

Winter in the Midwest is well under way, and if Punxsutawney Phil is correct, we’ve still got a ways to go.  Winter snow storms can wreak havoc with very little notice, and the combination of cold temperatures, heavy snowfall and high winds can take a toll on your home. Knowing how to protect your home before and after a snow storm could help you prevent serious and expensive damage.

Keep Water Away from Your Home

Seeping water can create a great deal of damage to your home. The first and most important step in protecting your home will be ensuring that water doesn’t have a chance to sneak in. Clear out your basement window wells of snow and water regularly. That way, you’ll prevent water from seeping in through the frames. Also make sure to shovel snow away from your home’s walls to reduce the risk of seepage. Take care to remove snow from doors and windows, especially those facing the direction of snow and wind.

Remove Snow and Debris from Ventilation Areas

Snow that blocks ventilation areas like exhaust pipes and air vents can create a number of problems. Without proper ventilation, you could risk damaging your heating equipment, and may even run the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning. Making a habit of checking these ventilation areas regularly could easily save your life.

Keep Your Eaves Open

When excess snow accumulates on the roof, it can easily freeze into the eaves and create ice dams. With nowhere else to go, the melting snow can seep under your shingles, causing damage that may not be noticeable until it’s too late. Remove snow buildup using a roof rake, or call in a professional to take care of it for you. Avoid trying to remove it yourself using a ladder, especially if there is no one who can help steady the ladder to prevent it from tipping. While you’re at it, knock down any icicles that have formed, to prevent unnecessary accidents and water buildup.

Keep Your Heat On

This should go without saying, but avoid completely turning off your heat if you are going to be away from your home for an extended period of time. Freezing pipes are a real concern in the winter months, and can cause severe damage. Instead, set your thermostat no lower than 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

But these are far from the only risks to yourself and your home during bad winter weather. As most of you already know, dealing with snow removal following a big storm can be a precarious job. Bauer Construction has put together a few additional tips to help keep you safe when clearing walkways and driveways:

  • Don’t overestimate what you are capable of doing
  • Take frequent breaks
  • Using a smaller shovel will reduce the amount of snow you can lift at one time, and reduce the strain on your body
  • Avoid removing snow if you are elderly or suffer from a heart condition
  • Lay down salt or biodegradable deicer as you clear sections of snow, to prevent slipping

While these tips can help you protect your home from winter storms, sometimes damage is unavoidable. If your home has suffered damage from a storm, the experienced team at Bauer Construction is here to help. We handle all manner of repair and restoration, and can help return your home to its original condition.

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