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Insurance Companies Share Tips to Avoid Cold Weather Property Damage

Posted on Jan 17, 2014

In early January, large regions of the Midwest and East Coast were struck with record low temperatures as an arctic freeze swept across the nation. Local governments warned people to stay inside and many businesses closed their doors as temperatures dipped into double-negative digits and wind chill factors sank to -40 degrees.

As is the case with many types of extreme weather, the unusual cold snap and freeze came hand-in-hand with property damage—from bursting pipes to failing furnaces. Before the weather struck, several insurance companies, including State Farm Insurance, shared some helpful tips on how families and businesses could protect their properties and structures from the deep freeze.

Tips for Protecting Property in Cold Weather

  • Beware of issues stemming from frozen pipes. Consider letting you faucets drip during extreme cold weather to avoid icy pipes, and insulate any pipes that are in particular danger of freezing. Open kitchen and bathroom cabinets to let the heat get to the pipes.
  • Understand that cold weather can put lots of strain on an old furnace or water heater – and that your thermostat battery could fail during winter months and cold snaps.
  • Disconnect garden hoses and put insulated covers over outside faucets.
  • Keep your garage doors closed whenever possible.
  • Clean your gutters so that water doesn’t get trapped, form ice, and cause damage.
  • Check your roof for damage from ice or heavy snow.
  • In case of frozen or burst pipes, know how to turn off your water main.

If your home is damaged by the cold snap, be sure to act fast, evaluate the damage, and file an insurance claim if necessary. Learn more about filing homeowners’ insurance claims.

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