Top Five DC Storm Protection Tips A DC storm is usually mild; however, the rash of intense winter weather has caused a lot of damage and concern. If you find another DC storm is bearing down on you, follow these tips to keep your house safe and dry. The best course of action is preparation and prevention. 1. Let Your Faucets Drip It may slightly increase your water bill, but letting your faucets drip is the best way to avoid frozen pipes. The movement of water through the pipes helps prevent it from freezing. Turn every faucet (hot and cold knobs) on at a trickle. You don’t have to waste a lot of water. If you regularly drink your tap water, put down some jugs or bowls to collect it. Not only does it save you some money, but it also keeps your pipes working all night. Keep in mind that the drip rate should be slow enough that you won’t have to worry about a bowl overflowing overnight. 2. Don’t Let Your Temperature Dip Below 55 When a DC storm is on its way, it’s tempting to flee to warmer climates. If you can get away, by all means, go. However, don’t turn your heating completely off when you leave. Set your thermostat no lower than 55. This small action prevents the cold from really getting into your house. Moreover, it’s cool enough that you’ll save over your typical electricity bill, too! 3. Don’t Wait to Trim Your Trees The best time to trim your trees is in the fall. If you’ve missed that window, there’s still a chance to take care of things before the next big storm hits. If you’re an able-bodied person, trimming your trees yourself is possible. Just make sure the ground isn’t too icy. You want to stay safe, especially if you’re using a ladder. However, if you don’t have the time, ability, or desire to cut your trees yourself, call a landscaping company. A quick touch up can save you a lot versus the cost of falling branches. 4. Don’t Pile Items Near Your Walls If you can, move everything away from the outside walls of your house. Items that are stacked there, from yard equipment to those branches you trimmed off your tree, can collect water. Water that collects next to your walls has a greater chance to get into the ground and affect your foundation. That’s not good! 5. Check the Basement Twice a Day In a serious storm, the old adage is better safe than sorry. Take a trip down to your basement (and, if you have one, up to the attic) in the morning and evening. Basements and other unseen areas of the house have a higher incidence of leaks going unchecked. If you’re not consciously checking, it might take you days or weeks to notice a leaking roof or wall instead of hours. A quick check is all you need to be sure that your home is still water tight. DC storms aren’t to be messed with. This season has already brought some doozies, and we’re not out of the woods yet. Follow these tips to be sure your home is ready for whatever these DC storms throw at it.