Winterize Your Home | 10 Great Tips
You’ve packed away your patio furniture and dug out the random gloves from the back of your closet. You’re ready for winter, but is your home? There are some steps you should take to winterize now before the next big snowfalls to make sure your home is taken care of and ready to withstand all of the elements that winter brings.
Inside Your Home
Stop The Draft
Air coming through ill-fitting door jams and window fittings let so much cold air in, and all of the warm air that you’re paying for out. Do a spot check and seal your doors where they meet the jam, and evaluate any window repairs that are necessary. Don’t forget to check the outside too, use weather-resistant caulk to seal any cracks or worn out areas.
Reverse Ceiling Fans
By reversing your ceiling fans direction the blades will push warm air downwards and allow it to recirculate. To make sure yours is winter ready, your blades should be turning clockwise.
Check Your Alarms
Now is a great time to make sure everything is working correctly. If you have a home alarm system, make sure that all maintenance is up to date. Test your fire alarms, and put in a fresh pair of batteries.
Change Your Filters
In the season of heavy heating, it’s important to replace or clean furnace filters once a month. Dirty filters restrict airflow and increase energy demand. The is even more necessary when you have pets, hair can clog a filter more rapidly.
Program Your Thermostat
This is a money saver for sure! Maintain the heat in your home, when you are not there. Set your thermostat on a schedule do reduce when you are sleeping, and when you are not home. Set it to heat up an hour before you wake up, and an hour before you arrive home. These handy settings can really help in the long run.
Lower Your Water Heater Temperature
Conventional water heaters are typically set at 140 degrees Fahrenheit (60 Celsius), but most households only need a setting of 120 degrees (49 Celsius) to be comfortable. Check your water heaters and lower them to 120 degrees.
Outside Your Home
Clean Your Gutters
Remove all fallen leaves and random debris from your gutters. Once the bulk is removed by hand follow along with a scraper to make sure all passageways are clear. Clogged drains can cause backups, and once frozen water can back up into your home. If you have the means to rinse our your gutters as well, look for leaks and re-align your run off pipe away from the house
Shovel & Salt
Invest in a good snow shovel. Nothing is worse than trying to push heavy snow around without the right gear. Invest in one with a metal “blade” on the front to help crack ice, and provide a smoother path. You can also invest in some de-icer salt, or simple cheap boxed salt can do the trick. Salt your stairs and walkways to prevent ice build up and slips. While you’re at it be a good neighbor and help them shovel too, especially if they are elderly! If you’re really into snow removal, a snowblower is all right too.
Drain Your Hoses
Drain the hose pipes to prevent them from bursting in the freezing climate, resulting in a major renovation. Turn off the water to the hose from the valve inside the house, then turn it on outside to let all the water drain out. If you already missed your chance and the snow has fallen, at least turn off the value inside the house and if you’re graced with some warmer weather drain your outside line then.
Pack Up Your Furniture
So maybe you haven’t packed up your outdoor furniture yet, or don’t have a place to store it. Wipe off, and pack away all furniture in your shed or garage to protect them from the elements, also invest in a good cover for your BBQ. If you do not have the space to store your items away, try and bring all cushions inside, and cover the bases, tables, and chairs with tarps to prevent wear.
If you’ve recently completed updates to your home, added an alarm or simply need to check that your insurance is accurate, please contact us. Our brokers want to make sure that your policies are accurate, and reflect the most current state of your property.