Winter in Montana can be a beautiful thing. Glistening, snow-capped mountains are a sight to behold, and the state offers a wide variety of exciting winter activities, such as skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing. Big Sky Resort, nestled within the Rocky Mountains in the southwestern portion of the state, is a major destination for skiing and is one of the largest ski resorts in the nation, with 5,850 acres of skiable terrain.
With the state’s high elevation and rocky terrain, snow is a common occurrence. But beyond the beauty the season brings, harsh winter weather and freezing temperatures can also lead to problems in your home. Frozen pipes are a common issue in the winter. About 1 in 50 homeowners file water damage insurance claims every year, which includes damage from freezing, according to an article published Feb. 2, 2022, on the Forbes website.
When water freezes, it expands. As water flows through a pipe and is met with freezing temperatures, it can create a crack along the pipe due to the expansion of the frozen water. The crack in the pipe is likely to lead to the pipe bursting, leaving you with a pricy problem and a big mess. To avoid frozen pipes, try keeping your cabinet doors open during extreme temperatures. The warm air from inside the house will circulate around the plumbing and keep it from freezing. It’s also important to disconnect garden hoses, as any water in the hose will freeze and potentially damage the spigot. If you leave your home for an extended period of time, make sure your thermostat isn’t set below 50 degrees. Though saving money on heating costs may be appealing if you’re going to be away for a while, low temperatures in your home could lead to frozen pipes, even if the plumbing isn’t being used.
Ice dams can also be a source of property damage in the winter. When ice builds up along the roofline, the weight has the potential to seriously damage your gutters and roof. They can also lead to moisture entering your home if the roof is compromised, resulting in mold and water damage. Ice dams typically form when snow melts toward the top of the roof, where it’s warmer, then flows to the lower portion of the roof, where it’s colder. The snow then refreezes and results in a blockage of ice. Adding insulation in the ceiling below the attic will help prevent the warmer air from reaching the space.
Clogged gutters can also lead to ice build-up. If leaves or sticks are clogging your gutters, they will block the water runoff path. Ensuring your gutters are well-cleaned of any fallen leaves in late fall may prevent potential damage in the freezing winter weather.
But sometimes, there are things that are beyond your control that just happen. Winter weather can be fickle and unpredictable, and your home may experience property damage that was completely unavoidable on your behalf.
Montana is no stranger to subzero temperatures. The coldest temperature ever recorded in the contiguous U.S. is 70 degrees below zero, which was measured at Rogers Pass, Montana, on Jan. 20, 1954, according to The Weather Channel. With the potential for heavy snow and freezing temperatures, property damage related to ice and snow to a home in Montana is a fairly common occurrence.
Because burst water pipes and ice dams on roofs are some of the top forms of property damage in the winter, many property owners file a water damage insurance claim in the winter every year. Hiring a public insurance adjuster can be a beneficial advantage in navigating the claims process. At Public Adjuster Montana, our experienced team will help guide you through the process, bring years of experience and deeply cultivated relationships with industry professionals, and negotiate with the insurance company to ensure you receive the best settlement possible.