Living in a country with one of the most severe winter climates in the world, we’ve become accustomed to a wide range of weather conditions. Despite this familiarity, businesses can’t predict how much damage will result or how long operations could be sidelined by a weather-related event.
Winter maintenance is an important part of ensuring the safety of you, your customers, and whoever else walks in and out of your premises. Without the proper procedures in place, your premises could cause harm or damage to others.
But don’t worry! We’re here to help you maintain your home-based business during the winter. Here are two infographics on how to maintain your home-based business during the winter – inside and out. Even if you don’t run your business from home, these twelve tips can help you protect both your home and your business.
6 tips for winter maintenance inside the premises
Here are 6 things to look out for when maintaining the inside of your home-based business:
- Alarms: Check smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly. Heating your home presents a higher risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and fire.
- Holiday decorations: Docorations such as lights, can lead to extra use of wall outlets and extension cords. Plugging too many lights and decorations into an outlet can overload circuits which can overheat and start a fire. Always make sure you unplug at nighttime.
- Fire extinguisher: Make sure you have an easily accessible fire extinguisher available and that it’s regularly inspected and properly maintained.
- Pest control: Colder weather means that pests, insects and rodents are looking for shelter. Ensure proper sealing of your vents and windows. Remember to seal your food sources and place traps inside.
- Computer/Equipment maintenance: Depending on the type of home business you have, winter is a great time to backup data, update software and perform maintenance on essential business equipment.
- Home emergency kit: Harsh winter weather always increases the possibility of power outages, so make sure you have an emergency kit with candles, batteries, blankets, food and water.
6 tips for winter maintenance outside the premises
Here are 6 things to look out for when maintaining the outside of your home-based business:
- Sidewalk/Entrance ways: Clear sidewalks and entrance ways of snow and ice. Take preventative measures to ensure customers/deliverymen don’t slip and fall.
- Roofs: Snow is heavy and excess build up can lead to a roof collapse. Remove snow from roof by using a snow roof rake or by contracting a professional to remove snow.
- Gutters: Make sure your drains and gutters allow water from snow melt to drain away from the home to reduce risks of flooding or damage to your foundation.
- Chimney: Dirty chimneys can be serious fire hazards, so make sure they are properly cleaned before having any fires.
- Exterior pipes: Insulate exterior pipes with proper insulation and turn off exterior water valves to make sure that pipes don’t freeze and burst.
- Vehicle: Take time to ensure your business vehicle is ready for the winter, by putting on winter tires, performing winter maintenance and having a road-side kit in case of emergency.
This blog is provided for information only and is not a substitute for professional advice. We make no representations or warranties regarding the accuracy or completeness of the information and will not be responsible for any loss arising out of reliance on the information. Terms, conditions and exclusions apply to coverage. See policy for details.