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Winter is coming! There is more to preparing your home for winter than ensuring your furnace works. Don’t get behind on your preparations when the first snowfall comes, or the first -20 C day hits.

You likely drained your pool or stopped watering your lawn weeks ago, but you may not have turned off your outdoor water pipes. Water expands when frozen, and can cause burst pipes when it does. Turn off the water valve on the inside of your home, then turn on the outside tap to drain any water from the line.

Snow often falls and melts before falling again in the winter. That extra water can find its way into your sump pump, so it’s important to make sure it’s working. Simply take a few large pails of water to your sump pump and pour them into the sump pump pit. Eventually, it should turn on and pump the water out. If you eventually get near the point of overflowing, it is likely time to replace your sump pump.

Safely check your home’s gutters and clear them of any debris. You want to ensure that melted snow can drain properly and away from your home’s foundation and window wells in order to prevent leaks and flooding, which may not be covered by home insurance.

Finally, prepare for a nasty winter storm, one where power lines might be frozen. You should have a winter survival kit that includes a phone battery pack, non-perishable food, batteries, flashlights, and bottled water.

There are many other considerations to take around your house to ensure it’s ready for the long winter ahead. You can ask a home inspector to help you determine what maintenance might be required for your new or current home. Be sure that you can stay warm and safe this winter!  

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