If we like it or not, Winter is coming! And it looks like we may have snow as early as Thursday. I am hoping the weatherman is dead wrong! If you have not gotten through our Fall Inspection Checklist from last month, below are three must-dos to make your home winter ready!
- Prep the Plumbing
Drain the water from your outdoor faucets and garden hoses and arrange to have any in-ground sprinkler pipes blown out. Roll up the garden hoses and store them inside. Identify any “problem” pipes that are prone to freezing in the house and consider using heat tape to keep them warm during freezing weather. If the worst happens, ensure everyone in the family knows how to turn off the water at the source. This will minimize leaking when and if a pipe bursts.
- Heat Things Up
Everyone enjoys cozy evenings by a crackling fire? Ensure your fireplace is ready to provide warm nights all winter. Be sure to have the chimney inspected and cleaned by a professional before the first frost. Also, have a professional perform a routine check of the heating systems before cold weather arrives. This should include vacuuming the vents and other heating components. If your furnace has a filter, check to see if it needs replacing. For more energy savings, consider installing a setback thermostat that keeps the home cooler when you are asleep or away.
- Seal the Leaks
Keep drafts to a minimum this winter. If you have them, install storm windows and doors — and don’t overlook the basement. Add or replace worn weather stripping around the doors and windows and caulk any gaps. If doorstops are worn, replace them. If any pipes or ducts travel through an exterior wall, be sure to use caulking and weather-stripping around all entry points. These steps will block any potential entry points for cold air. That’s an idea you can warm up to.
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Until next time, make it a great day!