Protecting Your Florida Panhandle Home from Freezing Weather and Hailstorms

Jan 24, 2024

While Florida may conjure visions of beaches and sunshine, the Panhandle experiences its fair share of storms, including ice and hail. Hard freezes and hailstorms can wreak havoc on homes, leaving unprepared residents shivering and overwhelmed by the damage these brutal storms can cause. The Florida insurance litigation attorneys at Insurance Litigation Group, PA recommend a little proactive planning to help harden your home, to keep your family and belongings safe from the elements.

How To Battle a Hard Freeze:

  • Inspect windows, doors, and siding and seal gaps with caulk or weatherstripping. Remember, even the tiniest gap can lead to a big chill.
  • Insulate your attic and crawl spaces and upgrade older windows with energy-star certified windows.
  • Exposed pipes are vulnerable to bursting in freezing temperatures. Wrap pipes with foam insulation or insulated tape to protect them from bursting during the winter months. Remember, burst pipes can lead to costly repairs and flooding, so prevention is key.
  • Keep your furnace or heat pump running and perform regular maintenance on your heating system. Consider a programmable thermostat to manage temperatures while you’re away to ensure the interior temperature of your home can defend against freezing weather.
  • Many policies exclude water damage to the interior of a home caused by freezing IF you fail to maintain heat in the building or you fail to shut off water system and drain appliances of water when you know you’re going to be away from the home. It’s important to take steps to protect your property from freezing, in order to recover funds to repair if there is damage.

Defending Your Home Against Hail:

  • No question, your roof bears the brunt of hailstorms. Insurance Litigation Group’s home inspection experts look for signs of damage such as missing or cracked shingles, and recommend they be replaced immediately to prevent leaks and additional deterioration. Florida homeowners should consider upgrading to impact-resistant shingles as an extra layer of protection for their homes.
  • Clogged gutters can make hail damage worse by creating ice dams and putting additional stress on your roof. Keep gutters clean so water can drain effectively and minimize the risk of ice buildup.
  • In Florida, storm shutters or impact-resistant glass offer invaluable protection, preventing shattered windows and safeguarding your belongings.  No matter where you live in Florida, window protection is a must, including in hurricane prone areas.
  • Decks and patios can also be vulnerable during ice or hailstorms.  Insurance Litigation Group’s Florida Home insurance experts recommend you secure patio furniture and loose items, and consider protective covers for grills, outdoor furniture and other improvements. Additionally, inspect railings and supports for potential damage after a hailstorm.  And don’t forget your cars and trucks.  Hailstorms can wreak havoc on them with incredible damage.

Remember, preparedness is key! By taking these proactive steps, you can turn your Florida Panhandle home into a sanctuary against North Florida’s unpredictable winters and the destructive hailstorms Mother Nature serves up.

Try to stay informed with on-the-hour weather forecasts.  Establish and practice an   emergency preparedness plan and enjoy the peace of mind that comes from knowing your home is ready for winter.

In the event your home is damaged by hail or a hard freeze, Insurance Litigation Group’s experienced property claim attorneys and field operations personnel are here to help you navigate the complexity of making a property insurance claim to ensure you are fairly paid for your property damage.  Give us a call today at (850) 919-4357.

Our Offices

We are a client-focused law firm that fights aggressively on behalf of residential and commercial policyholders, contractors, restoration and mitigation companies, to produce maximum recovery results from insurance companies through our unique expertise, deep understanding of insurance law, cutting edge technology and proactive approach to litigation.

Insurance Litigation Group serves clients across the state of Florida. With over 7 offices statewide, our attorneys have the knowledge, skills and experience to resolve your dispute against the insurance company. 

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