Winterizing home can save money and prevent headaches

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Winter weather is unavoidable in most places — but there are ways to avoid a lot of damage that can follow a storm.

Taking an active approach to weather-proofing can save homeowners thousands of dollars — if not more — and hours of aggravation.

According to Consumer Reports, water damage accounts for a majority of homeowners insurance claims.

Insulate exposed water pipes so they don’t freeze and crack when the temperature drops. Know how to shut off the water so if the pipes do crack, damage is minimized.

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Insulate walls, attics, and crawl spaces. This will keep the heat inside — and help prevent ice dams from forming on your roof.

Speaking of roofs — repair any damage or loose shingles. Snow or ice that collects on a roof will exacerbate the existing damage and leak inside.

Clean out drains and gutters. A blockage can cause water to back up and freeze, potentially causing roof leaks or ice dams.

Finally, remove weak trees and branches. These can fall on your home or vehicle during a storm, and cause severe damage.

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