Home Tip Tuesday: Tips for Preparing Your Home for Winter

Ways to ensure a warm and safe home this winter.

How much fun is to get up on an icy roof to install storm windows? It’s not fun, not convenient and defiantly not what you should be doing this winter. Avoid making cold, dangerous home repairs by getting your winter preparation done before the first snow flies. Our tips will help.

The HVAC System

  • Replace that old thermostat with a programmable unit. It will save money and keep your home more comfortable
  • Clean and replace furnace filters and humidifier evaporator pads.
  • Adjust ceiling fans to rotate in a clockwise position to blow warm air downward
  • Inspect your chimney and fireplace for needed repairs. Make sure the flue system is free of creosote buildup or other fire hazards
  • Bleed the valves on hot-water radiators
  • Flush sediment from the hot water tanks and check the pressure valve relief
  • Check any exposed ducts in your basement, attic and crawl spaces. Make sure leaks are plugged

Doors and Windows

  • Replace cracked and damaged weatherstripping around door frames and windows. Caulk around frames inside and out if needed
  • Time for those screen to go into storage! Replace window and door screens with storm windows and storm doors
  • Inspect windows for damage, and don’t forget to check window frames for signs of rot. Replace and repair as needed

Equipment Care

  • Clean all seasonal tools and give them a light spray of oil for rust prevention
  • Rearrange the garage to make winter tools more accessible
  • Check your supply of sand or ice melt
  • Crank up the snowblower. It may not be time to use it yet, but it’s time to inspect the machine for needed repairs and maintenance

Up on the Rooftop

  • Inspect the roof for damaged or missing shingles. Replace them if needed
  • Make sure gutters are clear of debris and that downspouts are secure and functioning properly. Downspouts should be directed at least 5 feet away from the house to prevent water damage to your home’s foundation
  • Check all vents and openings to your home for nests and other debris

Lawn and Garden

  • A break from garden chores is in sight, but take the time now to trim overgrown branches that may be a threat in heavy winter storms
  • Clean and store patio furniture
  • Winterize outdoor faucets by draining pipes, sprinklers and valves. Wrap faucets to protect them from winter damage
  • Drain and store attached hoses
  • Clean dirt and debris from the deck to help prevent mold growth
  • Check the outdoor lighting. Make certain steps and potentially icy walkways are well lit
  • Inspect or install handrails on exterior stairways

You’ll enjoy more warm nights indoors knowing your home is safe and well-maintained no matter what the winter brings.

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