How To Prepare Your House for the Winter

Posted on December 11, 2023


Frances Badayos | author

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ICHQ | Site Author

When winter comes, the risks of storm damage to your home increase.

Learning how to prep your home for winter can fortify your property. It could also lower the risk of damage and improve your personal safety. If your home does sustain damage during a winter storm, our team at Insurance Claim HQ stands ready to help you file a claim. Our home insurance attorneys serve residents of New Orleans and Louisiana statewide.

Why Prep Your Home for the Winter?

Failing to fortify your home before winter weather comes full force could leave it vulnerable and at a much higher risk of storm damage. There are many benefits to preparing your house for winter.

Lowers damage risks

Arguably, the most important reason to winterize your home is to lower the risk of destruction. Severe winter weather can damage your roof, pipes, siding, windows and concrete. It could cause flooding and trigger mold growth. The steps you take now might greatly impact your home’s durability during a severe winter storm.

Increases durability

A home is a major investment that you probably anticipate lasting a long time.

However, not properly caring for your home could cause elements of it to wear out faster. Knowing how to prep your home for winter protects your investment so it continues to provide refuge for a long time.

Improves overall safety

Severe winter weather and subsequent damage can put you and your family at risk. Flooding, fires, and collapsed roofing could threaten everyone in your home. The effort you put into winterizing your home can improve overall safety and provide peace of mind.

Winterizing takes time and can feel overwhelming when you look at the lengthy list of to-dos. Making a calendar and scheduling a few items to complete each week may help you feel less overwhelmed.

How to Reinforce the Exterior of Your Home Before Winter Hits

You can rely on family, friends, the internet, and even professionals at home improvement stores to teach you how to prep your home for winter. Outdoor tasks that can make a big difference include the following.

Checking the roof for leaks

Examine the roof of your home for signs of wear. This could include dark patches on shingles, spots where the roof sags, missing or damaged shingles, and water damage. Look for leaks or places where excess precipitation could compromise your roof altogether. If your roof requires repairs, schedule service in a timely manner.

Clearing gutters of debris

Rain gutters play a crucial role in moving water away from your home that could compromise the structure if left standing. If debris fills your gutters, runoff cannot move freely and could overwhelm the system, increasing the risks of a collapse or flood. It does not take long to remove trash, dirt, leaves and debris, but your effort could go a long way to protect your home.

Winterizing watering systems

Outdoor faucets and sprinkler systems require maintenance to prevent freezing. Prior to the first major drop in temperatures, remove your garden hoses and insulate your faucets. Home improvement stores sell covers designed for protecting outdoor faucets. Winterize your sprinkler system and refrain from using it until springtime.

Maintaining trees and large shrubbery

Trim and maintain overgrown trees and large shrubbery. This effort may prevent tree limbs and such from collapsing onto your home during a significant winter storm with high winds.

Learning how to prep your home for winter will take practice. With time and patience, these tasks will become easier and less daunting.

How to Protect the Interior of Your Home From Damage During Winter

There are also steps to take inside to protect it from winter storm damage.

Giving the interior of your home some TLC may prevent tragedies, including floods and fires, as well as improve overall comfort and safety.

Insulating pipes from elements

Chances are your home has some pipes that are on walls adjacent to the exterior. During an extreme drop in temperature, the water in these pipes could freeze over. This could cause the pipes to burst and lead to heavy water damage and flooding. Wrapping pipes can drastically reduce these risks, as well as ensuring your home has adequate waterproofing protection.

Sealing cracks in windows and doors

Preparing your house for winter also requires you to examine your windows and doors for cracks where air or moisture can get in. Drafts compromise the efficiency of your heating system. Even worse, moisture could cause mold growth, which can have harmful effects on your health.

Cleaning vents and ducts

Air ducts and dryer vents can fill with dust, lint, and debris over time. This creates a major fire hazard, especially with your furnace running all winter long. Ensuring these vents and ducts remain free of debris can significantly improve your safety.

Replacing batteries in detectors

The prevalence of carbon monoxide increases during the wintertime when your furnace runs. Make sure all of your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors have fresh batteries. Test your system to make sure all alarms function properly.

When you know how to prep your home for winter, you can move into the colder months with confidence and reassurance. Taking the right steps now could save you major stress, time, and money in the long run.

Types of Winter Storm Damage Your Homeowners Insurance Might Cover

Winter storm damage can cost a lot of money to repair. In serious cases, your home may be uninhabitable during repairs, forcing you to find alternate housing. Types of damage your homeowners insurance might cover include the following:

  • Damaged gutters
  • Roof destruction
  • Mold buildup
  • Flooding
  • Chipped windows

Whether your insurance covers certain damages will depend on the policy you have. Before signing a policy agreement, make sure you understand the coverage options you have.

Benefits of Contacting a Home Insurance Claim Attorney

A major winter storm could still cause damage even when you know how to prep your home for winter. Under these circumstances, your insurance company may deny responsibility or disagree with you about your coverage.

At Insurance Claim HQ, our team can help you file a claim. Contact our home insurance claim lawyers at [phone] or online so we can help you hold your insurance company accountable.