Winter weather in New Hampshire can cause significant property damage. Freezing temperatures and heavy snowfalls should encourage you to take certain precautions to winter-proof your home. According to the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS), frozen pipes represent one of the biggest property damage risks associated with dropping temperatures. In fact, a burst pipe can cause more than $5,000 in water damage, the IBHS reports. Check out the following tips to help you better understand how to prevent frozen pipes and water damage.
- Keep your home warm. The Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) recommends setting your thermostat to at least 65 degrees, considering that the temperature inside the walls, where your pipes are located, is quite a bit colder than the room’s temperature.
- Inspect your pipes for any cracks or leaks. Have the damaged pipes repaired right away. You may also wish to wrap exposed pipes with heating tape.
- You should also inspect outside walls and foundations near water pipes, and seal any cracks or holes you discover with caulking.
- During colder periods, keep cabinet doors open, especially those in your kitchen and bathroom. This will help warm air circulate around your pipes.
- Can you see any visible light coming from recessed light fixtures in your attic? If so, they are likely not adequately sealed or insulated, allowing heat to release into your attic space. Make sure you insulate all attic entrances, including partition walls, vents, electric and mechanical chases, plumbing stacks, and any access doors that have not been properly sealed.
- Check all of the doors, windows and wall cracks in your home for proper sealing.
- If you have pipes running through unheated spaces, keep a slow trickle of water flowing through the faucets connected to these pipes to help prevent them from freezing.
- Make sure you’ve learned how to shut off the water in the event that your pipes freeze despite having taken the recommended steps to prepare for winter weather. According to the I.I.I., the faster you are able to shut off your pipes and/or direct your plumber to the problem, the better chance you have to prevent pipes from bursting and causing significant damage to your home.
- If it’s in your budget, you may consider installing an emergency pressure release valve in your plumbing system, which will protect it against increased pressure resulting from freezing pipes and help prevent these pipes from bursting.
- Consider investing in an alternative power source, like a portable generator, to help prevent your pipes from freezing in the event that you lose power for several days.
Winter weather can be unpredictable in New Hampshire. This makes taking these precaution even more crucial. For additional tips about how to prevent pipes from freezing and o
ther ways to winterize your home, please visit the I.I.I.
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