Prevent Freeze Damage on Your Rental Property – Tips from a Property Manager

Freezing Fog courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net/danAs the temperature begins to drop, your home will require some low maintenance in order to keep it worry-free throughout the winter. Cold weather is always a factor in this part of the country, and we’d like to share a checklist that will help keep your heat bills down this winter and make your home warmer and safer for you.

Planning ahead can save you money and frustration.

Outside Preparation

1. Check and close all the vents to any crawl spaces under the building, if applicable.

2. Unhook your garden hoses and turn off outside faucets if they are “freeze-proof.” If the faucet is not freeze-proof, leave it open outside and turn off the valve to the supply line inside the house.

3. Prevent water lines from freezing. Should pipes freeze, don’t use open flames to thaw out lines. This may catch the house on fire, or worse, create an explosion caused by expanding steam between two plugs of ice.

Pipes don’t always burst the first time they freeze. However, should a pipe burst, quickly locate and turn off your water at the main valve. (If you don’t know where the shut-off is, let us know now, before any trouble occurs.) If the pipe break is in a hot water line, close the valve on the top of the water heater also. A plumber may need to be called. Please contact us for advice or for an approved plumber.

4. Check to insure that the caulking around the outside windows and any weather-stripping around door frames is still in place to stop cold air.

5. Don’t forget to close storm windows.

6. Make sure storm chains, if present, are attached on any storm doors. This prevents strong winds from blowing the door off or damaging the door.

7. Now that the leaves are down, make sure the gutters cleaned out. If they are clogged with leaves, the water will overflow and could cause water damage to the property.

Inside Preparation

1. Make sure the heat never goes below 55 degrees, even when you are not home.

2. During periods of cold weather, leave the doors open on kitchen and bathroom sink cabinets that are on exterior walls, so that pipes inside will be exposed to heat.

4. Make sure the attic access door is properly closed and in place.

5. If you have a fireplace or a wood stove, the chimney needs to be cleaned each year. Chimney fires are common if this is not done. We can call a professional who can do a complete job and also check the safety of the chimney.

6. Test your smoke alarm(s). There are more fires in the winter, and the smoke alarm is one of your best safety features. If you don’t have one, or it doesn’t work, let us know. This is important for your safety.

If have any questions about the winterization of your property, please feel free to give us a call at 303.563.4101 or email us at boulder@8zrentals.com.

We greatly appreciate your efforts in helping to make sure your residence is kept as warm and as safe as possible during the upcoming winter months.

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