Winter can catch us by surprise sometimes. When temperatures dip into freezing, precautionary steps are important to keep you warm and the protect the residence. Generally, the Pacific Northwest benefits has mild temperatures. That can sometimes leave people unprepared.
Please prepare ahead to be sure you have done everything you reasonably can to help avoid leaks, burst water pipes, and furnace outages to be sure you limit your liability.
- WRAP OR COVER EXTERIOR FAUCETS. If you do not see any covers at the residence, they are inexpensive to purchase at home improvement stores. Here's a link to one at Home Depot for reference. https://www.homedepot.com/p/Standard-Faucet-Cover-1980/20475922
- DETACH ALL EXTERIOR GARDEN HOSES.
- TURN OFF WATER SUPPLY TO EXTERIOR FAUCETS IF AVAILABLE.
- CALL RIGHT AWAY IF YOUR FURNACE STOPS WORKING. Cold snaps put a lot of pressure on furnace technicians to restore heat right away. Call right away to get on the schedule and avoid freezing pipes.
- CHANGE YOUR FURNACE FILTER MONTHLY. Dirty filters put strain on the system and cause outages. Some filters can be changed less frequently, but monthly is recommended.
- LOCATE YOUR WATER SHUT-OFF NOW. Keep the path clear to the shut-off. You don’t want to be moving boxes or other heavy items to get to the shut-off in the event of a leak.
- OPEN CABINET DOORS. Open cabinet doors underneath sinks to allow warm air to circulate. Turn interior faucets to a slight drip.
- SET THERMOSTAT. Set the thermostat to a minimum of 65 degrees so that in the event of a power or heat outage, the interior temperature will take longer to dip to very low temperatures.
- KEEP A FLASHLIGHT HANDY.
- DO NOT RUN PORTABLE HEATERS! Your electrical system may not be able to handle the extra load generated by a portable heater. Overloading the system could cause a fire, especially in older properties. If your heat isn't working properly, please let your management company know right away!
- IF YOU SUSPECT A GAS LEAK, LEAVE THE RESIDENCE IMMEDIATELY AND THE AREA IMMEDIATELY, THEN CONTACT PUGET SOUND ENERGY AT 1-888-225-5773 OR 911.
If you will be on vacation during winter months, we highly recommend you contact us to be able to hire a contractor to WINTERIZE THE HOME to prevent major damage in the event a water pipe bursts while you are gone. You should also check your renter’s insurance policy for coverage due to your negligence if you do not prepare the home for vacation.
As always, call your property management office if you have any questions.