be proactive and take the necessary preventative steps to ensure your home is protected when it gets frigidly cold outside.
Not only can winterizing your home keep your energy costs down; it can prevent astronomical, ruinous costs later.
Windows & Doors: Having cold air seep into your home through cracks can be annoying. To prevent this, inspect your windows and doors and replace any weather stripping that appears to be worn. Caulking cracks can help keep that cold air from entering your home. In addition to caulking, drapes, curtains, shades, blinds can help you prevent heat from escaping your home.
Fireplace: Inspect your fireplace closely and remove any soot or ashes. Cracks could potentially become a fire hazard if not addressed sooner rather than later. Some maintenance steps for your fireplace may be better suited for a professional to take a look at. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Furnace: Hire an HVAC inspector to look over your furnace. Your furnace should be thoroughly cleaned and your filter should be changed every 90 days.
Thermostat: No one likes to live in a cold home during the winter time. However, it may serve you well to know that you can save up to 1% on your energy bill for every degree you lower your thermostat during the winter. Have you considered replacing your thermostat with a smart model? They can help you save on heating costs as well.
Other home heating: Space heaters—however comforting—can be dangerous if not used properly and carefully. It is estimated that 44% of house fires are caused by space heaters, according to the National Fire Protection Association.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors: In preparing your home for the winter, one of the most important steps you should take is checking to see that your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly. Additionally, gather your family members and review your emergency plan just in case you need to get out of your house quickly. Knowing what to do in the event of an emergency can help save your life.
Gutters: Clogged gutters can cause a variety of problems for your home if not attended to: problems with your foundation, wall and ceiling damage, and even insect infestation.
Roof: Have your roof inspected by a professional before winter arrives. Repair any damages to shingles.
Trees and Landscaping: It’s important to know how to spot a diseased tree. When a tree is not strong and has weak branches, both heavy snow and strong winds can potentially know the tree down, thus causing an even more serious problem.
Lawn equipment: Be sure to drain the oil and gas from your lawn mower before storing it away for the period of time you won’t be using it. It only takes a few weeks for gasoline to separate and potentially cause damage to your engine.
Snow removal supplies: Inspect your snow removal equipment to make sure they are no signs of wear. It’s important to have a solid, heavy duty snow shovel. If heavy snow on top of your roof is not removed quickly, once it melts, it could possibly seep through cracks and enter your home, causing water damage to your interior. This can be a costly fix.