As we finish the holidays and temperatures drop, there are a few things you need to focus on to prepare for the long winter!
Doing a few small chores now will ensure that your home is safe from problems that can occur due to snow and ice. Winterizing can also help you experience energy efficiencies through the colder months. It doesn’t take much time to prepare your home for winter. Just one weekend should provide enough time to complete the following tasks which will help your home brave the coming months.
- Make sure everything outside is drained and shut off. Ensure there’s no water backed up in your hose or sprinkler system, then shut them off.
- Clean your gutters. This tends to be one of those tasks people want to put off, but it can mean significant issues for your home if you do. Water can back up and turn to ice, which can expand and get underneath your shingles. Ice can cause leakage into your home as well as long-term damage to your roof. Take the time before any snow starts to fall to clear out those gutters.
- If it’s already snowed, clear it away from the edges of your roof. Similar to the issue with the gutters, snow, water, and ice can all collect along the edge of your roof and cause you problems.
- Clear your basement window wells. Dig out any debris that built up over the fall. Again, if water freezes there, it can cause leaks and drainage into your basement.
- Make sure your heat source has been properly cleaned. You may want to call in an HVAC professional to complete a thorough inspection and make any necessary updates. Clean all the components of the system such as the motor, fan, and ducts. Equally important, check any outside vents and make sure that snow cannot build up on them, which will eventually cause them to stop working. Blocked vents can cause carbon monoxide to circulate in your home, so it’s critical that you have proper airflow from those vents.
- Inspect your chimney. If you plan to use your fireplace, make sure no animals have built a nest in your chimney (squirrels and raccoons love chimneys). Clean the area of debris, and call in a professional inspector if anything looks off to you.
- Have a plan to keep walkways clear. Keep sand and salt nearby and accessible. Also, keep a shovel somewhere that is easy to get to. You don’t want to have to walk through feet of snow to get to your garage to retrieve your shovel! Making sure everything you need to de-ice is close by and convenient will help you to keep walkways clear all season.
A few simple steps will save you plenty of headaches down the road. If you have any questions about winterizing your home, please let us know, we would be happy to assist you.