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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

6 Causes for Winter Water Damage in Your Somerset County Home

1/12/2023 (Permalink)

Water damage can happen at any time during the year and when it happens, it causes a mess and many headaches. However, now that we’re in the winter season, there are 6 main causes for winter water damage that you should be aware of.

Frozen Pipes
SERVPRO can help you with all types of winter water damage. Winter can bring about frozen pipes, rising temperatures, and heavy snowfall, which can all pose risks to your home.

For example, when pipes are exposed to freezing temperatures, they can split and cause costly damage to your property. When your pipes are frozen, it causes the water molecules to expand, and if they expand too much, the pipe will burst.

How can you prevent this from happening?
To prevent your pipes from bursting, you can keep your cabinet doors open overnight to allow the heat from your home to wrap around the pipes, keep a very slow trickle of water flowing, and most importantly, keep an eye on the weather. If you’re not aware of the temperature drops overnight, chances are you won’t be able to get prepared.

Air Conditioning Units
When not properly maintained or insulated against the elements, air conditioning units can also burst during frigid temperatures. If you like to keep your air conditioning units in the windows all year long, please insulate them accordingly to avoid this from happening.

What are the best ways to avoid this?
Insulate your units by adding flexible foam insulation material around the entire air conditioner and use tape to prevent air leaks. There are also many different products out there that’ll help you cover the units safely.

Water Heaters
If you live in an area where the temperature can drop down to 25 degrees or colder in the winter, your water heaters are forced to work harder than normal. Also, if your water heater isn’t properly maintained or if it’s on the old side, there’s more of a chance for leakage.

The obvious cause is melting snow. If snow accumulates to a large amount, your home is at risk of flooding, mold growth, and roof issues. Be sure to remove the snow before it has a chance to get too high, causing it to sit for days while it melts.

Clogged Gutters
Before a winter storm hits, it’s a good idea to go up and check your gutters. You want to make sure there aren’t any leaves or debris buildup. If they are clear, you have a better chance of them not overflowing. However, if your area suffers from a large winter storm causing a large amount of snow and ice, your gutters can freeze and cause spillage down the foundation of your home as it melts. After the storm, we advise you to clean them out before this happens.

Badly Insulated Pipes
If your water line is exposed to outside temperatures, the pipes must be properly insulated. Have your pipes checked out prior to the winter season. If you don’t have time, you can purchase pipe insulation made of foam or fiberglass to protect them from freezing.

About SERVPRO Team Harvey
SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan is proudly owned by Lance and Jennifer Harvey - a husband and wife duo that owns three other SERVPRO locations, including SERVPRO of Lower Manhattan, SERVPRO of Hoboken/Union City, and SERVPRO of Aberdeen/Holmdel.

We understand the stress and worry that comes with a fire or water damage and the disruption it causes your home or business. Our goal is to help minimize the interruption to your life and quickly make it “like it never even happened.”

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