Thaw safely: Tips to protect your home in the spring melt
March 13, 2018
Mother Nature's latest wallop has left huge piles of snow in its wake. Managing the white stuff as it melts will help to keep your home safe.
"There's a lot you can do to make sure that when the snow melts, that water makes its way to the drain and not into your home," SGI CANADA Chief Operating Officer Don Thompson said. "A little time spent now could save you a big headache as the weather warms up. This much snow so late in the season could result in a very fast melt."
Managing snow around your property and checking on a few key pieces of equipment in your home will help with keeping melt water running smoothly:
- Rake remaining snow off your roof.
- Check your eavestroughs and gutters for signs of ice dams and/or remove debris that could slow the flow of water.
- Shovel snow away from the foundation of your home.
- Check the grading in the yard to see that it is sloping away from the foundation, allowing melt water to lead away from your home.
- Extend your downspouts away from the home by at least two meters.
- Check your backwater prevention valve on the main line of your sewer, if your home has one - is it in working condition?
- Check on your sump pump and pit to make sure everything is in good condition and ready for melt water.
- Check your basement regularly for signs of water.
When it comes to water damage, be sure to check with your SGI CANADA insurance broker to see if you have coverage for overland flooding. Sewer back up and flood coverage is optional, so for peace of mind, check on what you opted for in your policy. Following these steps should make your home spring melt ready.
If your home does experience flooding or other damage, contact your SGI CANADA insurance broker as soon as reasonably possible to file a claim. One of our adjusters will contact you to make an appointment to come out and assess the damage.
While waiting to see an adjuster, you can take steps to protect your property from further damage or loss if it is safe to do so.
SGI CANADA has the following tips:
- Clean up as soon as possible. Seek professional advice on how to clean up and take whatever reasonable steps you can to minimize the extent of the damage.
- Don't throw anything out. Store damaged items in a reasonably safe place so the adjuster can see them when he or she arrives.
- Have any appliances (including furnaces) that have come in contact with water checked by a qualified electrician, dealer or service person before you use them.
- Do not touch any electrical systems or panels until you know it is safe to do so, especially in wet or damp conditions.
- Move damaged belongings to a dry area with good ventilation.
You should keep track of cleaning expenses as they are considered part of the insurance claim. SGI CANADA also encourages customers to take photographs or video of their damaged property to give to their adjuster.
Visit www.sgicanada.ca/tips to learn more about how you can protect your home.