Markham, ON – Wednesday, January 8, 2014: Arctic air is bringing record lows to communities across the country this week and freezing and bursting pipes can cause significant damage to homes. Pipes can freeze in as little as 24 hours even with the heat in the home being maintained. Insurance policies may not provide customers with complete protection unless they have taken precautions.
Allstate offers the following tips to help you protect your home and property during cold weather:
- Keep the house heated to a minimum of 18 degrees Celsius. The temperature inside the walls where pipes are located can be substantially colder than the walls themselves. A temperature lower than 18 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 are going to be away, drain the pipes. This can be done by first shutting off the main water line and then draining all lines by opening the taps and closing them once the water runs out. Also flush toilets to remove water from tanks. Be sure to have someone check on your home while your away to ensure heat is being maintained as well.
- Make sure all hoses are disconnected from outside spigots.
- If you discover that pipes are frozen, don't wait for them to burst. Take measures to safely thaw them immediately (such as wrapping pipes in towels soaked in water heated on the stove, or using a hot air from a hair dryer, while being careful to stay away from standing water to avoid the risk of shock), or call a plumber for assistance.
- If your pipes burst, first turn off the water and then mop up spills to prevent the water from doing more damage than it already has.
- Make temporary repairs and take other steps to protect your property from further damage, such as remove any carpet or furniture that can be further damaged from seepage.
Pipes around the water meter, in unheated areas, near exterior walls and in crawl spaces are most vulnerable to freezing. A good sign of a frozen pipe is if little or no water comes out when a faucet is turned on.
If homeowners encounter damage resulting from cold weather, or if any further support is needed, please contact your insurance agent. Allstate customer claims can be reported to Allstate Canada’s 24-hour, 7 days a week claims line at 1-800-387-0462. Or contact Allstate online.
About Allstate Insurance Company of Canada
Allstate Insurance Company of Canada is one of the country’s leading producers and distributors of home and auto insurance products, serving Canadians since 1953. The company strives to keep its customers in "Good Hands®" as well as its employees, and has recently been listed for the second year in a row on the Best Employers in Canada list. Allstate Canada is committed to making a positive difference in the communities in which it operates and has partnered with organizations such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD Canada), United Way and Junior Achievement. To learn more about Allstate Canada, visit www.allstate.ca.
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