The snow won’t let up for a few more days at least, but property damage from the inclement weather may not show up until a while later.

Cold-weather problems, such as pipes bursting, are something homeowners need to watch out for, but the problems may not show up until the snow disappears.

Dave Smith, owner of Hermiston cleaning and restoration company O-So-Kleen, said they often won’t get calls about burst pipes until the ice and snow start to thaw.

Smith said there are a few common mistakes that people make in cold weather. In the spring, people will begin washing their cars, and while the water may be turned off, the hose will still be connected, and water may be backed up in the hose.

“People won’t notice until they start watering,” he said.

Smith said if people leave for the evening or weekend, they may want to turn their thermostats low to save energy. But Smith said it’s not a good idea to let the temperatures get below 55 or 60, because some corners of the home may get close to freezing.

“It sounds like saving energy, but you have to think about above the house, the attic,” he said.

The “smart” water meters installed by the city of Hermiston last year can monitor water usage in real time and flag large spikes in usage and other indicators of a leak. Water customers can also log in to their account and check for themselves.

Broken pipes aren’t the only weather-related damage that can happen to homes. Keeping trees trimmed and removing unhealthy trees can also help prevent a tree branch from crashing through a window or roof. And keeping gutters clear of debris can help keep water from backing up when the snow starts to melt.

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