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Aug 20, 2020

5 min. read

Top tips to prepare your home for what winter—and spring—may send our way.

If there's one thing all Canadians know we can't control, it's the weather. But between raking the yard and pulling out the snow gear, we can make sure our homes are ready for anything Mother Nature throws at us. CAA Manitoba's Property & Casualty Insurance team shares tips on what to do now and later to prep for both winter storms and spring flooding.


Start with the roof.

Do a thorough visual inspection to locate missing, damaged or warped shingles. For older roofs, ask a roofing company to inspect it for you. They can identify any roofing, seal or ventilation issues that should be addressed. Don't forget to clean your gutters too, and ensure all water drains away from the foundation.

Inspect the exterior.

Check for and repair exposed insulation or siding damage. Trim back branches from both the house and electrical wires to prevent potential property damage or power problems. Inspect decks (including handrails), sheds and garages for signs of wear. Make any repairs and clear structures of debris to discourage mold and mildew.

Prep pipes and hoses.

Shut off and drain any exterior water sources—pools, hot tubs, sprinklers, hoses, outdoor pipes—and prepare them for winter. Cover and/or store items properly to help preserve their condition. For fireplaces, wood stoves and the like, regularly maintain and clean the unit, including the chimney, flue and exhaust pipes.

Focus on the interior.

Contact a professional to ensure your home's HVAC system is running effectively. Check all windows and doors for leaks, cracks or gaps and repair if necessary. Review your home's insulation needs, especially in unheated areas. Frozen water supply pipes are often an issue during harsh Manitoba winters.

Prepare for the thaw.

Clear snow away from your home to prevent water buildup and keep the weight of snow and ice off the house. Having properly working flood-loss prevention devices—sump pumps and backwater valves—in place can go a long way. Check the condition of your gutters, downspouts and septic systems before it gets warmer.

Make sure you're covered

Review your home insurance policy to ensure you have the protection you want in place. And remember: No insurance policy will cover absolutely everything, so always be aware of policy limitations and exclusions. Still have questions? Contact your broker or CAA Insurance. Visit caamanitoba.com/insurance to learn more.

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