As the temperatures continues to drop, your utility bills will continue to rise. Protect your investment this holiday season by going through this quick winter preparation checklist before the first snowfall. Preparing your home early in the season will ensure that your home is fully prepared when the most brutal weather hits this winter.

Tune up your furnace

Even if you haven’t experienced any issues with your furnace, getting your unit tuned up before winter hits could actually save you on the coldest day of the year. If you wait to get your furnace tuned, you could be at risk of having to pay much higher rates or waiting in line behind other homeowners with the same request. Be proactive this Fall, and contact your local HVAC specialist today.

Prevent ice dams on your roof

Air leaks in your attic or insufficient attic insulation can result in costly ice dams building up on your roof. Ice that builds up on your roof can cause water damage to your roof which can then lead to severe water damage in your attic and into your home. Prevent water damage and get your roof inspected before freezing temperatures hit.

Clean your gutters

If your gutters are full of leaves, twigs and other debris, it can cause water to not properly drain off of your roof. Clogged gutters can also cause ice dams to form. Whether you hire someone to clean and inspect your gutters, or whether you do it yourself, remember to inspect the downspouts as well. To keep water from pooling near your home, consider adding longer downspouts during months with heightened precipitation. This will allow the water to drain and freeze further away from your home, reducing any water damage in your basement or causing any safety hazards from freezing ice near walkways.

Turn off your outdoor faucets and sprinklers

Stagnant water that is left in your outdoor faucet or sprinkler system should be emptied out before freezing temperatures hit. Undrained water left in the pipes can freeze and expand over time and eventually burst, resulting in water damage in your home. To avoid water damage, turn off all of your garden hoses using the shut-off valve inside your home.

Test your sump pump

If there hasn’t been much precipitation in your area, your sump pump likely hasn’t ran for awhile either. Before winter hits, and the precipitation levels start to spike, test out your sump pump. The best way to test if your sump pump is working is is to pour a few gallons of water into it and see if it turns on. Depending on the age of your sump pump, you might want to consider replacing your sump pump if it frequently isn’t working right. An average sump pump lasts about 10 years, so if yours is older than that you should consider replacing it.

Water damage repair and restoration by ServiceMaster by Rice

ServiceMaster by Rice provides professional water damage repair for your residential or commercial property. If your sump pump gives out, a pipe bursts, your gutters cause water buildup, or ice dams form on your roof, contact ServiceMaster by Rice’s restoration specialists. We use a 5 step approach to identify the water source, evaluate your belongings, and perform structural drying to restore as many of your belongings as possible. If your home is impacted by water damage this winter, contact your local ServiceMaster by Rice. To find the nearest ServiceMaster by Rice location to you, view our locations.