Winter is coming…is your house ready?
Tis the season for falling leaves and rain, lots of rain. Well, if you’re planning to do some yard work and leaf blowing this month, be sure to also think about what steps you need to take for our NEXT season. Here are our top 10 tips to winterize your home against unruly weather.
1. Inspect and Clean Gutters
All those lovely and colorful leaves that are starting to fall aren’t just on the ground! Be sure to check your gutters and clear leaves and debris from them and the downspouts to prevent ice dams and water damage come winter.
2. Roof Inspection
While you’re up there looking at your gutters, take a peek at your roof for damaged or missing shingles. Stop that water from getting in through your roof!
3. Winterize you home’s Doors and Windows
Nobody likes a chilly house, but worse than having to layer your clothes is having to pay a HIGH heating bill. Caulk gaps and cracks around doors and windows to prevent drafts. Consider adding weatherstripping to improve insulation.
4. Furnace and HVAC Maintenance
What’s the one thing you really don’t want to stop working in 30 degree weather? We hope you said your furnace! Don’t forget to schedule a professional inspection and cleaning of your heating system. And, replace the furnace filter – each change in the season is a great time to do that.
5. Chimney and Fireplace Maintenance
A wood-burning fireplace is the hallmark of a cozy Fall or Winter evening, but what is NOT cozy is a smoke-filled living room. Have your chimney cleaned and inspected before using it for the first time of the season. Ensure the damper is working correctly.
6. Insulate Pipes
What a huge pain it can be to have a pipe burst! It can run the gamut from an inconvenience all the way up to a major issue. Insulate exposed pipes to prevent freezing and potential bursting.
7. Seal Exterior Gaps
Do you know what also wants to stay warm and dry in the winter? Pests and rodents! Check for gaps or cracks in the exterior walls and foundation, and seal them to keep out cold air and pests.
8. Winterize Outdoor Faucets and Sprinklers
See number 6! But also…shut off outdoor water sources and drain hoses to prevent freezing and bursting. Here’s the $5 investment that will save you from a lot of trouble when the temperatures drop.
9. Prepare for Power Outages
The windstorms of seasons past have made us seriously consider the importance of a generator! A generator or backup power source could make a huge difference when the power goes out. Be sure to stock up on flashlights, batteries, and candles too. We think these plug-in flashlights are great for power outages! They stay on the charged while plugged in and turn on when the power goes out.
10. Winterize Landscaping
Trim tree branches that could fall on your home during winter storms. Now would also be a good time to store outdoor furniture and tools to protect them from the elements.
We hope these tips to winterize your home give you peace of mind and lots of cozy, warm evenings in your home this season! Maybe you’ve had issues with water damage from winter weather? Then you need to read our Homework Series post with tips from our Home Inspector. Check it out here!