Your cottage is more than likely built for comfortable spring and summer living. But if you want this nice little place to make it through the colder months unscathed, there are some steps you may have to take in order to make it happen. Here are 3 tips that can help you get your cottage ready for winter.
1. Make Sure Your Windows and Doors are Winter-Ready
When you’re thinking about your cottage in terms of whether or not it’s comfortable to live in during the summer months, doors and windows that fully close may seem like enough. However, during winter, small gaps and cracks can literally open the door to moisture damage or pests.
That’s why it’s important to seal your windows and your doors. In addition, if you don’t have storm windows, consider installing shutters for protection.
2. Manage Your Pipes
One of the biggest risks associated with winter-related property damage is water damage from a bursting pipe.
We all know that Canadian winters are notorious for their freezing temperatures. If a pipe freezes and bursts, your cottage could sustain serious water damage.
The good news is that there are a few ways to tackle this. You can:
- Turn off water so that there’s nothing left to freeze
- Run hot water to prevent your pipes from going cold
- Upgrade your insulation so that your pipes are a bit less vulnerable to the winter temperatures
Ultimately, your best option will depend on the particulars of your cottage. If you need to install a water heater or add insulation, you may need to consult with a plumber or a general contractor before making those modifications.
3. Clear Leaves and Twigs From Gutters
Another winter-specific risk that you’re probably looking to avoid is ice dams. These are ridges of ice that form on rooftops and prevent snow and water from running off. This might not seem like a big deal on its own but during the usual winter cycle that sees snow melting and refreezing, that moisture could leak and cause damage to your home.
One way to try and prevent ice dams from happening is to remove debris that ice can easily form around like leaves or twigs.
The One Thing Every Cottage Owner Needs Before Winter
Going into the winter months it’s important to make sure that your cottage insurance is updated.
Did you add a tool shed to your property? Is there an additional boat or waterski that you haven’t insured?
Even the best preparations can fail. And if that happens, you want to be sure that you have the coverage you need.