Winter is here, and for many that will mean snow. Some areas will get a lot more than others, and some will hope and hope for a big snow that won’t happen. Thankfully, we usually have a couple days of warning to start getting things ready before the first flake ever falls. Like other weather events, you can prepare your home for a major snow by taking some simple steps and making some advance accommodations. Here are some easy things you can do to get ready for a big snowstorm.
Clean Out and Cut Back
One of the first things you can do to prep your home for snow is to clean out your gutters. Gutters do a great job of collecting debris and rainwater, but if they are clogged when a snowstorm hits, it could cause a lot of unnecessary damage to your home. You should also trim back any large tree branches that could crack and fall on your home. Trimming them back BEFORE winter weather hits could save you thousands of dollars in potential damages and a lot of headache! You could also get up on your roof and clear any leaves or debris that could be resting on your roof. Heavy snow could weight this stuff down and cause roof damage.
Protect Your Pipes
One tried and true trick to help protect your pipes from the freezing temps that come along with a big snowstorm is to leave your faucets dripping. Not a trickle, but just a steady drip that will keep some water flowing through the pipes. This will greatly reduce the risk of them freezing and bursting. We also like to leave our cabinet doors open at night when it is really cold to let some of the warm air from the house circulate underneath the sink.
Get Snow Gear
If you don’t have a good snow shovel or a snow blower, you may want to invest in one, particularly if your area gets a lot of snow. You should also have some rock salt to prep your sidewalk and stairs from the ice, and to help prevent falls. Make sure to have plenty of window de-icer and several scrapers to use on your vehicles, too.
Close Your Vents
Be sure to close the outside vents around the foundation of your home. Not only well it help to keep those cold drafts at a minimum, it can help keep the wet snow out from underneath your home.
Have Emergency Supplies on Hand
In some areas, a major snowstorm can be crippling. Imagine icy roads, power outages, and freezing temperatures. It can be a nasty combination. You may not be able to leave your home for several days, so being prepared to hunker down is key. Have plenty of food and water on hand, enough for at least a week. You will also want to have a well stocked emergency kit with flashlights, candles, extra batteries, and plenty of extra blankets. If you don’t have an alternate heat source and your power goes out, you’ll be in need of heat, so you should consider investing in a gas heater, or making use of a fireplace if you have one.
Insulation is Key
Every winter, you should inspect windows and doors to see how well they are keeping the cold out. Look for cracks, leaks, and places where cold air might get into your home. If you find some issues, you can call in a professional who can help you seal those up and weatherproof your house.
Snow can be a force of nature to contend with, but you don’t have to be concerned if you take the proper precautions. What did your family do to be snow ready this winter?