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Tips for Protecting Your Home from the Cold

Frozen pipes and broken furnaces are keeping local repairmen very busy today
January 7, 2014 – Arctic air is bringing record lows and hard freezes across much of the nation, including the Northeast. Local plumbers and repairman are very busy in the Erie region today thawing frozen pipes and fixing broken furnaces.  There are things you can do to protect your home and property during cold weather and save yourself a repair bill.

Freezing and bursting pipes can cause significant damage to homes and Allstate Insurance Company recommends homeowners prepare their homes for cold weather using a few tips.

“All it takes is a few precautionary measures to avoid a potentially messy and expensive situation,” says Julia Reusch, Allstate spokesperson. “But in the more unfortunate event of a pipe freeze or burst, there are steps you can take to minimize the inconvenience.”

Allstate and the Insurance Information Institute encourage residents to consider the following simple steps to help prevent frozen pipes:
•Keep the house heated to a minimum of 65 degrees. The temperature inside the walls where the pipes are located is substantially colder than the walls themselves. A temperature lower than 65 degrees will not keep the inside walls from freezing.
•Identify the location for the main water shutoff in your home. Find out how it works in case you have to use it.
•Open hot and cold faucets enough to let them drip slowly. Keeping water moving within the pipes will prevent freezing.
•If you haven’t already, make sure all hoses are disconnected from outside spigots.
•If you discover that pipes are frozen, don’t wait for them to burst. Shut off the main water valve and take measures to safely thaw them immediately, or call a plumber for assistance. When thawing a pipe, start thawing nearest to the faucet.
•If your pipes burst, first turn off the water and then mop up spills. You don’t want the water to do more damage than it already has.
•Make temporary repairs and take other steps to protect your property from further damage. Remove any carpet or furniture that can be further damaged from seepage.
Most homeowners policies cover damage resulting from a freeze, but by protecting your home with these cold weather tips, you can avoid a lot of potential damage.

If homeowners encounter damage resulting from cold weather, Allstate encourages them to contact their insurance company.

This information provided by Allstate Insurance.

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