Texas Winter Tips for DFW Homeowners
Although Texas winters in Dallas-Fort Worth are usually mild, most homeowners take steps to winterize their property. Ice and snow occur usually once or twice a year, and occasionally an extremely cold winter will catch area residents by surprise.
Although winters in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are usually mild, most homeowners take annual measures to protect their property from potential bad weather. Ice and snow occur usually once or twice a year, and the occasional extremely cold winter can catch even lifelong residents by surprise.
“You’re probably not going to need a snow shovel during a North Central Texas winter,” said Mark Cyrier, owner of Mr. C’s Ace Hardware in Hurst. “But there are some things that are important to know about when it comes to cold weather here.”
Pipes and Faucets
Probably the most common items that Cyrier sells for winter preparation are faucet covers. These devices fit over the outside of spigots to keep water from freezing and causing pipes to burst. “In the other parts of the country, the faucets shut off further back in the wall,” Cyrier said. “In Texas, the shutoff is right at the handle.”
If the weather is going to be below freezing for several days, many residents keep the cabinet doors to their sinks and bathroom vanities open to provide extra warmth for their plumbing systems. Even when taking these measures, there are other ways to be prepared. “It’s a good idea for homeowners to know where their water meter is located and have a shut-off wrench on hand so they can cut the water off at the street if a pipe bursts,” Cyrier said.
Metroplex homeowners are often obsessed with having a lush, green lawn, and many protect their investment during the winter with fertilizers that promote root growth. “Winterizer fertilizer also includes weed killer. We still get weeds in the wintertime, especially if the weather is mild,” Cyrier said. Some of these fertilizers also have components that kill weeds in the soil before they become established.
Lawn equipment also needs care before it is stored away for the winter. “Some people run their gas-powered lawn mowers or trimmers until the fuel runs out,” Cyrier said, and fuel additives can also protect lawn equipment while it is stored.
Although most shrubs and trees survive Texas winters, you should always be ready for a serious cold snap. Rare as it is, temperatures in the Metroplex can drop to the single digits. Many residents keep tarps or some sort of cover for their sensitive plants. “We advise our customers to stay away from plastic,” Cyrier said. “Plastic will draw in the cold. Cloth will retain warmth.”
Pools, Lawn Furniture, and Furry Friends
Aside from your landscaping, other elements of your outdoor areas need attention as you prepare for a Texas winter. Here are some basics:
- For homeowners with outdoor pets, freezing water can be a problem. Hardware stores usually stock heaters for water bowls to keep water warm enough.
- Many Dallas-Fort Worth homeowners cover their lawn furniture, lawn equipment, and barbecue grill during the winter months. Covers protect them from the harsh wind, rain, and blowing leaves, as well as for the occasional snow or ice.
- Pool owners often cover their pools during the winter as well. Some residents have heated pools that can be used all year long, but for homeowners who don’t use their pool in the winter months, a pool cover is helpful in protecting it from leaves and other debris. Parents with small children will definitely want to invest in a safety cover.
By taking these steps before the winter season hits, you’ll be able to take any surprise snowstorm with stride.
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