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Old 09-19-2011, 06:57 AM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Coastal New Jersey
Posts: 77
What do you do?

I have a question for those that do head south over the winter months... what precautions so you take to protect your stick house from the freezing temperatures in case of an extended power outage...I worry about bursting pipes if we were to loose electric for a few days due to an ice storm...I have hot water baseboard heat and I know I can have antifreeze put in that system.. do you drain the domestic water pipes?.. also since the USPS will only hold mail for 30 days do you forward your snail mail?... Joe

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Old 09-19-2011, 07:32 AM   #2
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I drain the water lines and water heater.. Once you get to where you are going then you can put in a temp change of address.. or like me you can make arrangements with a friend to pick up your mail and forward it to you once a month..

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Old 09-19-2011, 09:58 AM   #3
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I am having a friend stay in my home, saving them rent, and they will pay utilities, and they will check mail, only forwarding inportant "stuff" We will be gone 5 months
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Old 09-23-2011, 04:28 PM   #4
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We trip the main breaker in the shop and turn off the hot water tank in the house. The heat is turned down to 50* and the mail is forwarded to Az. A neighbor checks on things regularly.
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Old 01-25-2012, 02:38 PM   #5
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I leave DW behind and let her take care of it.
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Old 02-14-2012, 01:11 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Shenandoahvalley View Post
I leave DW behind and let her take care of it.
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Old 02-14-2012, 01:50 PM   #7
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I have two friends houses that I check from time to time as they are not here but about 2 weeks in the winter months. Each have a security system in the house and a temperature monitor that the alarm company calls if the house drops below a certain temperature. That temperature is whatever you set it at. Twice this season I have been called to check as the house was below the 45 deg point in the middle of the night. Turns out the furnace was not cycling right and I had to let in the techs to fix it. The other time was just the thermostat was set too close to the trigger temp.

The second home has the new smart phone/internet connection where you can monitor and change your house from wherever should something not be right.i.e. power loss, water leak (sensor on basement floor), temperature below warning level and possible break in, should you ever have this issue.

My point here is that even if someone is checking on the house they are not going to be there everyday. It does not take that long for water to pile up or do damage should something go awry. So maybe the monthly fee for a security system might be well spent as a backup. The other option is to completely winterize.

As for the mail. Forward to a local mail box if in an area for an extended period.

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Old 02-14-2012, 02:16 PM   #8
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Location: Wedowee AL
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I live in small town and have a friend go by and pick up my mail every 2 weeks. Because mail is not piling up, post office holds for me indefinately and does not limit me to the 30 day policy thing. Longest we have been gone is 14 weeks. Friend goes through mail and mails me anything I need to see. I pay all bills, except for 4 on-line. I write out checks for those 4 and then friend fills in the amount and mails those for me. She sends me the stub and I record in check book.

On house I have security system monitoring. Same friend checks on things and waters house plants etc every couple weeks. Living in North Alabama, no I do not drain anything. Only when we have ice storms do we have to worry about being out of power (i.e. heat) that long during the winter. Then temperatures should be back above freezing within 4-5 days. If we every have one come through here, we do have propane gas logs as a backup and would get friend to go turn them on and open necessary interior doors to keep house from freezing.

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