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Ways To Prevent Water Damage In Fall

Ways To Prevent Water Damage In Fall

As we get further into winter, we will see colder temperatures and an increase in snow. Hopefully, you have already done some fall preparations to prevent winter water damage, but you still need to stay vigilant. Taking preventative measures is great, and it decreases the risk of water damage, but the winter can still bring severe weather that can cause home water damage. Look out for these different ways that water damage can occur and consider the condition of your home when the temperature drops. Do what you can now to prepare your home and watch for water damage as the season goes on. Here are some common causes of winter water damage to try to prevent.

Potential Causes Of Water Damage In Winter

Ice Dams
When the heat of your home warms your roof, it melts the snow on top of the roof and causes a layer of water. This water then goes to the edge of the roof, where it freezes, thus preventing other water from escaping. This creates a backup of water that then stays on the roof. Ice dams can cause water damage to your roof by getting under the shingles, damaging the shingles and getting into your attic or ceiling. To help prevent ice dams, there are preventative measures you can take. 

  1. Check your roof insulation. Ice dams form easily if the roof doesn’t have proper insulation, as it will make the roof warmer than the outside air and cause melting.
  2. Check your home temperature and circulation. Insulation in other parts of the house can be a problem as well. If heat is not properly circulated and all of the hot air rises, your attic will be the hottest part of the house, which will cause snow melt and subsequent ice dam formation.
  3. Clear the snow off your roof. Ice dams can’t form if there is no snow to melt. And large amounts of snow actually act as an insulator, causing the snow on the bottom to heat up and then melt. When there is only a bit of snow, this insulation will not occur and the snow is less likely to melt.

Snow On The Roof
Snow buildup on the roof isn’t only bad because of the threat of ice dams, it can also cause roof collapses (especially if it is heavy wet snow). Snow on the roof may also cause water damage if temperatures suddenly increase, as the snow will become slush that rests on the roof. If there is any damage to your shingles, this slush can leak moisture into the roof. If your gutters are mostly full of frozen water, the melted snow will overflow the gutters and gather at the base of your home, which can also cause water damage. To avoid water damage or a roof collapse caused by snow on the roof, clear the snow off if there is more than 15 cm on the roof. Leave just a little bit of snow (approximately 5 cm) so as to not damage your roofing.

Frozen Pipes
As the temperature drops this winter, pipes are at risk of freezing. If pipes freeze, they can burst and cause serious water damage to the home. To avoid this, ensure that all pipes are insulated, particularly those in less insulated areas such as the garage, crawl spaces, the attic, and anywhere else you can think of in your own home that is susceptible to the cold. Remember to keep your home somewhat warm in the winter even if you’re gone. Whether you leave for the day or for a full holiday vacation, make sure your home is set to 10℃ at the absolute coldest and that areas with pipes receive adequate air circulation by opening kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors. Know what to do if your pipes do happen to burst by reading Burst Pipes? What You Need To Do.

Water Damage Restoration In Calgary

As winter begins, learn what you can to prevent potential water damage. Taking steps now can save you a lot of trouble later. If something does occur and your home suffers from burst pipes or other forms of water damage, don’t panic. Call 24/7 Restoration and our team of restoration specialists will immediately begin the process of repair and restoration to get your property back to pre-loss condition. Our team is available through our emergency line so you can call anytime, day or night, and we’ll be there to help make your home safe, restore what we can, and dispose of anything damaged or dangerous. For all non-emergency restoration needs, you can contact 24/7 Restoration through the online contact form.


Q: My pipes are normally fine in the winter, why might they freeze?
A: Alberta winters are becoming increasingly cold and unpredictable and a brief cold snap is all it takes for poorly insulated pipes to quickly freeze. Beyond this, any winter storms that hit can take out the power. This can cause some people to lose their heating, particularly those with an electric furnace. If your house has no heat during a winter storm, pipes can freeze and burst. Read What To Do If You Have Been Impacted By A Winter Storm to learn how to handle this situation.

Q: How can water damage impact my home?
A: Water damage does more than get carpets wet, it can also damage your drywall, lead to the development of mold, damage the foundation of your home, destroy your personal belongings, pose health risks to you and your family, and more. Learn about the risks of water damage by reading Common Ways Flood Damage Can Impact Your Home.

Q: Does 24/7 Restoration charge for estimates?
A: Our estimates are 100% free and we are committed to being super responsive when flooding occurs in your home or business.

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