Common Property Problems to be Aware of This Winter
Some people love winter, whether that’s because of the thought of snow, Christmas or because of the excuse to wrap up warm and cosy. However, even if you love the cold season, the extremely low temperatures can bring complications that threaten your cosy home.
So how do you overcome or prevent these challenges? Let’s explore some common problems that can arise during winter months…
Windows act as one of your property’s defences against the cold, but they can also be a weak spot. Changes in temperature, amongst other elements like weather and time can lead to issues with your windows.
On a cold or windy day, check to see if you can notice any draughts coming through your windows. You may even be able to hear sounds of the wind whistling.
You should also check walls, especially the areas that surround windows for any cracks that let cold in. Seal these cracks with caulk or weatherstripping.
For minor window damage, try applying tape as a temporary fix until you can get a window replacement. If the damage is severe, consider contacting a professional for repair or replacement as soon as possible.
It’s important to address any issues with your windows as soon as possible, as they provide security as well as protection from the cold. Issue-free windows will give your home the best chance of proper insulation, meaning you’ll be able to efficiently heat your home for less.
Extremely cold temperatures can lead to complications with your plumbing system, the most notable being frozen pipes. Water inside your pipes can freeze, which will then lead to pipes expanding, bursting and leaking or flooding. Water damage can be catastrophic to surrounding property. Damaging walls, ceilings, floors, and anything else nearby.
External pipes and pipes in the loft are the most susceptible, but if you let your house get too cold, it could happen anywhere.
Fortunately, there are several things you can do to prevent this from happening. You can insulate any exposed pipes with sleeves or heating tape. You can also make sure your home is adequately heated to minimise the risk of pipes and water getting too cold. Making sure you run water regularly from all taps will help too, as running water is less likely to be prone to freezing.
Signs of a frozen or blocked pipe include symptoms like noises and slow drainage. Try pouring hot water from a kettle down the drain, you can even try using a hairdryer on the part of the pipe that has frozen to see if it helps melt the ice.
In the event of a burst pipe, turn off the main water supply immediately and contact a plumber ASAP.
Snow is great, until it starts to melt. Not only can it cause an icy, slippery mess on the ground, but it can cause problems overhead too. Melting snow can place stress on your roof, and the resulting excess water could cause leaks.
Before the weather gets bad, and especially if you know heavy snow is coming, inspect your roof and make sure it is structurally sound and doesn’t have any gaps, weak areas, or missing tiles. If you can, try to remove excess snow before it melts.
If you notice a roof leak and cannot patch it up yourself, call a professional before the leak and subsequent damage gets worse.
Pests Seeking Shelter
Due to the cold temperatures, you may encounter pests seeking shelter in your home. Small rodents such as mice can squeeze in surprisingly tiny gaps and end up invading your space. Make sure to identify and block all entry points that you can identify. Leaving pests with no way in is a lot better than having to resort to traps or professional pest control.
A power cut is never convenient but in the dark and cold of winter it can be a very uncomfortable problem. Make sure to have a torch handy. Alternatively, you can always keep a portable charger charged up and available for your phone so you can use that as a torch without fear of it running out of battery.
A stock of candles and blankets will help to keep you warm and well lit whilst you wait for the power to come back on.
Always Be Prepared
By following the tips above and planning ahead for the weather, you can rest assured that your winter will be as comfortable and “chill” as possible. Remember, you can always contact a professional if needed.