prepare for snow blog

Take action. Prepare and fight winter weather with a strategy.

Often unpredictable and very dangerous, it is important to prepare for natural disasters before aid is needed.

Preventative maintenance: The goal is to repair or replace a component or system before it fails or breaks down. That means keeping up with regularly scheduled inspections, tests, servicing, replacements, repairs and other tasks intended to help reduce the impact and frequency of equipment failures, both interior and exterior.

Preventive maintenance is key to extending service life and cutting costs. At DMG, we recommend the following preventative maintenance tips to mitigate potential winter disasters.

1. Get ahead of frozen pipes before they burst

When a pipe freezes, the water inside expands, creating pressure inside the pipe. Inevitably, that pressure cracks or bursts the pipe, leading to flooding. Cleanup from a burst pipe can be a big, expensive hassle, causing delays or even closing your businesses for a period of time as you assess and repair the damage.  
Take these steps to prevent frozen/burst pipes this winter:

  • Check pipes, interior and exterior, that are exposed.
  • Make sure exposed pipe openings are properly insulated and sealed.
  • Do not let the interior temperature drop below 57 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Dry off areas that build up excess moisture.

2. Inspect your HVAC system(s)

As temperatures drop, your heating system must perform at its best in order to maintain a consistent temperature and prevent property damage. Approximately 39% of annual energy use in the U.S. is strictly for heating buildings. Having a properly functioning HVAC system will give your business a controlled climate without jeopardizing the customer experience.

Follow these tips to get the most out of your HVAC system this winter:

  • Look for cracks that may cause inefficiencies in your heating unit.
  • Inspect your HVAC system for any blockages around hoses and blowers.
  • Calibrate your thermostat and test it routinely.
  • Empty condensation traps.
  • Make sure all air vents are clean to maximize air flow.

3. Prepare for severe weather

When winter storms bring snow, ice, high winds and bone-chilling temperatures, you need to respond with urgency.

  • Keep your parking lots and driveways clear of any hazardous obstacles such as snow piles and ice.
  • Generously salt all pedestrian walkways and paths to avoid slips and falls.
  • Reduce wet and icy entryways and interior walkways by replacing and cleaning floor mats routinely. This also helps reduce salt damage to flooring and other interior surfaces.

4. Prevent ice damage

Inspect your building before, during and after snow and ice hit. If your building’s roof is older or damaged, it will be more suspectable to issues as temperatures drop. During the winter months, snow could accumulate on your roof, melt, and then refreeze. This creates an “ice dam,” which prevents melted ice from draining properly. Water takes the path of least resistance, which is likely under the surface of the roof, causing structural and roof damage.

Take these precautions to prevent ice damage to your property:

  • Make sure to clear your roof of high-piling snow and/or drifts.
  • Inspect your roof from the interior and exterior for damaged areas that may be susceptible to leaking air and/or water.
  • Clear water drains, downspouts and runoffs to prevent ice dams from forming.

Preventative maintenance: The goal is to repair or replace a component or system before it fails or breaks down. That means keeping up with regularly scheduled inspections, tests, servicing, replacements, repairs and other tasks intended to help reduce the impact and frequency of equipment failures, both interior and exterior.

Preventive maintenance is key to extending service life and cutting costs. At DMG, we recommend the following preventative maintenance tips to mitigate potential winter disasters.