|Unoccupied buildings are susceptible to damage especially when Mother Nature sends an unpredictable wave of frigid air across the country.
We usually associate freezing pipes with cold climate states, but temperatures low enough to freeze or damage pipes can happen anywhere in the country. The water damage can be more severe when pipes burst in areas considered to be “warm” because proper precautions and action plans are not in place.
Here are some tips to aid policyholders in protecting their properties:
- Turn on the heat to keep the entire building warm.
- Confirm cracks or wall penetrations are sealed, and doors and windows are securely closed.
- Install devices to shut off water in the event a pipe leaks and water is flowing.
- Inspect/replace appliances and water supply lines as recommended by the manufacturer, and when damage is observed.
- Insulate or apply heat tape to water pipes, including wet sprinkler system pipes.
- Install a monitoring system for building temperature.
- Heat sprinkler control valve/fire pump rooms with UL approved devices.
- Develop a plan and locate all water shut-off valves so quick action can be taken for a leak.
- Use a qualified service or individual for interior inspections during weather events or any extended unoccupied periods to confirm the security of the property.
When small problems go undetected, they become big problems. Business and rental property owners should prepare for events or seasons when buildings may go unoccupied for a planned or unplanned period of time.