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Preparing Your Home for Winter Storms

Is your Philadelphia home ready for the winter storms Mother Nature has queued up for the coming season? Philadelphia winter storms can be brutal, with nature throwing everything she can think of into a nasty mix that often results in sleet, ice, freezing rain, and snowfall that’s measured in feet, not inches. You can get your home ready for the potential possible brutality that’s a scant few weeks away with just a few tips from the pros.

A Pre-Storm Check-Up

Before the cold winds of winter begin to blow, check your home inside and out for potential perils that may cause you some trouble down the road. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so nipping problems in the bud now likely save you money in the scheme of things a few months later. Consider:

  • Checking out your sump pump. Heavy rain can cause flooding in no time flat. Be ready for it by draining your system properly and testing the unit’s mechanical components.
  • Clean the gutters. Fall leaves can create a problem in your gutter system, preventing water from free-falling through the system and leading water buildup around your foundation or your basement.
  • Trim problem trees. Trees that are encroaching on power lines or leaning too close to your home for comfort should be trimmed back or cut down altogether. Nothing can destroy a nice roof and lead to a costly home insurance claim faster than a giant tree crashing on top of your or your neighbor’s house.
  • Tie down outdoor furniture or place items in the garage.

Your Winter Storm Plan

Your winter storm plan should include where you plan to take shelter during the storm inside your home. Professionals say to retreat to the lowest level in a room with the fewest windows. Alert the entire family as to your plan, and be sure that your pets are considered.

Get your supplies ready, including:

  • Non-perishable meals and snacks that you can prepare even without electricity. You should also have plenty of water on hand for drinking.
  • Food for your pets.
  • Flashlights and tons of batteries.
  • Candles and a lighter.
  • A battery-powered radio.
  • A portable cell phone charger.
  • Loads of blankets and pillows.
  • A heat source that is not hooked up to electricity.
  • First-aid supplies.
  • Prescription medications for the whole family.
  • Cash.
  • Board games, cards, other entertainment.

Review Your Homeowners Policy

As part of your storm prep, if you haven’t lately, this season may be a good time to review your homeowners insurance policy. Any homeowners insurance in Philadelphia, PA, should have a policy that covers things like frozen pipes and the damage that can result from them, replacement or repair of roofs that can buckle under heavy snow and ice, and damage caused by fierce blizzard-force winds that are common in Philly winters.