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Top Causes of Winter Water Damage in Hudson, WI, and How to Prevent Them

Updated: Apr 1

Living in Hudson, WI, we’re all too familiar with the hazards winter can bring including poor driving conditions, icy sidewalks, and extreme cold. Many tend to forget water damage among the list of winter hazards. When we think of water damage, spring showers and summer storms probably come to mind. However, winter presents its own unique challenges. The water damage restoration professionals at ServiceMaster Restoration & Cleaning want to help you keep your home damage free this winter. Learn about the top causes of winter water damage and how to prevent them!


Ice Dams: Ice dams are chunks of ice that form along the edges of your roof. Normally, they are no problem. However, when the weather begins warming and the snow on your roof begins to melt, the ice dams prevent it from draining and cause it to instead seep under your shingles and into your home. This water damage can go undetected, causing mold to grow and costing thousands to fix.


What to do: The best way to prevent ice dams is to keep your roof cold. There is little to no heat on the edges of your roof, so when warmth from your home radiates up through the main part of your roof, that contributes to the snow melting faster than the ice. Make sure your attic is well insulated to prevent heat from escaping. Building codes general require between 12 and 14 inches of insulation. Also, consider ventilating your roof to push out warm air while drawing in cooler air.


Frozen Pipes: When the water in your pipes freezes, it expands, placing stress on the pipe and causing it to burst. This can lead to serious water damage. Pipes that run outside, against exterior walls, or in unheated areas are particularly vulnerable to freezing.


What to do: To keep your pipes from freezing in the winter, make sure your whole house is warmed. Even if you’re away, don’t let the thermostat drop below 55° and keep doors open to promote warm hair flow throughout the home. Empty water supply lines to remove excess water that could freeze. Also, ensure pipes, particularly those in vulnerable areas like the attic, exterior walls, garage, and basement, are well insulated.


Melting Snow: When the warmer weather starts rolling in, it may feel like all of your winter woes will melt away. Unfortunately, that melting snow poses a threat too. Melting snow can find its way into your home through the foundation or your roof.


What to do: Remove snow from around your home before it melts. Clear the snow away from the perimeter of your home and from any surface that slopes towards your home like a patio or deck. Also make sure snow and ice is clear from your drains, otherwise it can backup and prevent water from draining properly. Something you should do before the snow arrives is make sure your property is properly graded to encourage water to drain away from your home.


Sometimes, even when we do everything right, winter water damage can still find its way into our homes. If you find yourself combating water damage, contact your local water damage restoration professionals at ServiceMaster Restoration & Cleaning. We have the tools and expertise to restore your Hudson, WI, home from water damage of any severity. We’re available 24/7/365 to respond to your water damage emergency. Just give us a call at 800-920-4642 for immediate assistance!

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