Realtor Misquotes - Winter Home Tips

Just reading through a local Realtors monthly blurb and this is what he had to say, which I find most unusual.

  1. Electric baseboard heaters are always drawing power even when shut off. If you are not intending to use them shut off the switch at the hydro panel.

  2. When the ground is travelled upon, it pushes the frost ever deeper. If you have water lines underground, it is a good idea to stay off of it over the winter. Even a pipe 4 or more feet under ground can freeze if the frost is pushed deeper by traffic, either human or vehicular.

Thats news to me. I have never ever heard either of these theories before.


Yes Bullcrap baffles brains. I have never seen frost in my region go below four feet EVER, unless you go really far north.

Now you know why Realestate agents should not endeavour to be home inspectors!

  1. Bovine deposits.

  2. Technicaly, yes… this one can be somewhat true. However the way it is stated is missleading. Traffic in winter on a ground surface will compact/reduce the snow coverage. Snow does have an insulating value. So the less snow the colder the ground surface can get. Ever notice on years that we get a good snowfall before it turns really cold how much greater the mole population is? On years where it gets really cold first then the snow the mole population is greatly reduced as many did get the added insulation proptection from the snow.

However, I suspect that the lower ground surface temp translates into a fraction of a inch or otherwise negligable differance at the frost line level. 4 feet in our area Ray includes a margine for saftey for those really nasty cold winters. Soil compaction by heavy vehicles in the summer may also lower the frost line but I would still think that you would be ok a 4 feet anywhere in southern Ontario

So basically this one is bovine deposits also esp. by the way it is presented.

Not to mention soil type, water content, drainage, grade,…

As to Moles, can’t say I have done an extensive study, but if there is no snow cover its a greater opportunity for Hawks, coyotes, foxes to get at the critters. :wink:

As to this year the frost level is not down very deep because we have had a very mild winter. The most mild winter since they started keeping records. At this rate we maybe able to reduce the 4’ requirement to 3’. :wink:

Hey Paul,

Did you get the same flyer I did that contained the info I posted?

I believe the Colorado Rockies are directly over Bejing, China.:wink:

I don’t know. Let me go check the trash…

Nope. Just the Banner. Who is it put out by?

Ahhh, but what about the electric baseboard heat?

Bovine deposits.

I have a few bovine deposits out in the paddocks. :slight_smile: :slight_smile:

Why do you have “bovine deposits” in the horse saddling area?

Ah good question…

Actually they aren’t paddocks per se but two large fields for grazing and I put cattle on it for the summer/fall. I took the fences down between the paddocks closest to the barn as that is where the water is so they can come in and water, salt, etc. I use to have horses, but they are all gone. So to keep the grass down cattle are the next best thing.

Green acres is the life me… :wink:


Thanks for the email.

How’s that corn stove working out for ya? There’s one in the Banner this week for $500.


Not using the cornstove much. I am not happy with it entirely, so I think it may go into the barn for use in my workshop.

Unless one can buy bulk corn it is a pain in the butt to buy bags and bags of corn. But I don’t have a way to store the corn in bulk.

Wanna buy a cornstove? :wink:

I see grain wagons at auctions for only a few hundred dollars.

Do the wagons climb stairs?
I did note however that my cornstove doesn’t use electricity when its not on though. :wink:


actually the qoute about freeze up is pretty acurate, up here in northern minnesota, it is pretty much an unspoken rule that you do not walk or drive a snowmobile etc. over your septic or lines in the winter, because you are compressing the insulating value of the air in the snow and creating a high likelyhood of freeze up. got in trouble years ago delivering propane cuz i walked across someones septic.:neutral: as far as baseboard heaters using juice when not on, that one does sound like droppings.

I agree with Paul, I spent over 12 years in Minot ND, Grand Forks ND and Great Falls MT… Those places are crazy cold!

Snow is actually a very good insulation blanket. This is why Eskimos can survive in the Artic at -60, but the temp in the igloo is a balmy 33± deg. Even body heat in a properly designed snow cave will raise the inside temp to right about the freezing point. This is the latent heat concept, where the temp will not raise much above freezing because it takes a huge amount of energy to force the snow to change states into water. Anyway, I’ve digresses…

Also a consideration is mineral and soil competition of the earth itself in the affected region. …As you know, heat travels by conduction, convection and even radiation. Never the less, the temp of soil is normally around 55 deg F at 8’ to 10’ deep all year, regardless of outside temp. Some things do influence movement of heat in the earth. Highly compacted soil will conduct heat (or loss of heat) slightly better, than loose fill soil. This concept as applied to blown insulation in an attic is apparent. Mashed insulation just does not insulate as well, and also mashed soil follows in the same way to various degrees.

So if you had extremely compact soil, zero snow cover, and it was -40 for 6 straight weeks, you may freeze a pipe at 4 foot deep. But I’d carefully examine the point the pipe froze up at… is there a 3 foot deep bolder covering the area where the pipe broke… with its top exposed to the ambient air, and to what extent do the minerals in the highly compacted rock conduct heat away from the soil near the pipe.