October 2022


Closing your cottage retreat

(NC) A cottage is one of the greatest ways to enjoy spring, summer and fall in Ontario. But every season changes. While it’s bittersweet, closing the cottage is an essential part of maintaining the property for another year. Here are some important steps to take as you lock up:  
Whether you plan to use your cottage all year or not, remember to turn off each individual breaker before you turn off the main power source. This will help protect your major appliances when you power back up, including your pump and hot water tank.  
Make sure to store all extension cords in rodent-proof containers or where they won’t be subjected to freezing temperatures since that can cause them to crack. 
Walk around your property to see if any trees are growing too close to overhead powerlines. If you do, call a certified utility arborist or your?local utility company and ask to have the trees pruned. Remember, in the winter, evergreen branches hang much lower than other times due to snow.  
For outdoor outlets exposed to the elements, a cover plate marked “Extra Duty” will keep snow, water and debris out and help prevent electrical damage to your property. 
Plan ahead 
Monitor your cottage when you’re not there with smart home technology. There are systems available with sensors to monitor for flooding, freezing and fire, and to operate security lighting and thermostat control. 
To install smart home technology safely and correctly, plan ahead and hire a licensed electrical contracting business. Any devices being used outdoors must be rated for outdoor use to prevent damage and deterioration in the elements.  
If you need to hire a professional to help install new technology or ensure the electrical at your cottage is working safely and efficiently, they must be a licensed electrical contracting business. Look for their ECRA/ESA licence number. Keep in mind that most electrical work requires a notification, also known as a permit, from the Electrical Safety Authority. Ask your contractor for a copy of the Certificate of Acceptance for your records.  
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