Every homeowner knows that when the winter arrives they have to prepare their houses for the cold weather. Here are some winter home maintenance tips that will help you prepare for the snowy conditions and freezing temperatures of the season.
Make Sure your Heating System is Working Correctly
To ensure that your winter goes smoothly, ensure that your heating system is operating well before the really cold months roll around. You must make sure your heating system is ready to take on the winter. Get it inspected early in August and no later than October. Your family should not have to freeze in your home because you’re heating system is malfunctioning. This is the most important thing for winter home preparation.
Double Check your Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Your carbon monoxide detectors should be in good working order. You will need these devices to make sure your family is not being silently poisoned by carbon monoxide gas from your heating system. This is another reason why you should inspect your heating system before the winter season arrives. If you don’t have carbon monoxide detectors in your home, it’s suggested that you purchase some immediately.
Don’t Forget about your Sump Pump
Your sump pump (if you have one) is a necessary home system that will keep your house from flooding. This piece of equipment is necessary for keeping melting snow and ice and rain from flooding your residence. When you prepare your home for winter make sure you test out your sump pump to ensure that it is not malfunctioning.
Maintain your Chimney
If your home has a usable chimney, get it inspected before the winter season sets in. Make sure that it is not clogged up and that it is properly vented. Once you have your chimney prepared you can use your fireplace to help warm your residence.
Clean your Gutters
Your gutters can present a problem during the winter months if they’re filled up with leaves and other debris. Keep them clean to stop icicles from forming and to keep your home from taking in too much moisture from snow.
Eliminate Ice Dams to Protect your Roof
Protecting your roof is important because ice dams can form on top of them. To prevent this from happening, try to keep snow off your roof to the best of your abilities. Make sure you have proper insulation and ventilation. You can also consider using heating cables to help keep the snow form accumulating. Just make sure you know what your doing before you apply heating cables to your residence.
Insulation to Preserve Heat
Make sure your home is insulated all year round to help save on your energy bills. However, insulation is incredibly important during the winter time. You’ll keep more heat in your home and use less fuel to warm your place up.
Check your Roof Before the Snow Falls
Check your roof to make sure it is in good condition. Have it inspected by a professional. You should also clear off debris from your roof if it happens to be flat. Flat roofs can accumulate lots of snow and other debris and this could cause problems with collapse and cave in. Regardless of the shape of your roof make sure it is in good condition before it gets cold.
Get Salt for Your Sidewalks and Driveway
To avoid slips and falls and to keep your sidewalk clear of ice and slush; get some rock salt. You can also use sand for this purpose. Stack up and this will go a long way with keeping your sidewalk and driveway free and clear from snow related problems.
Run your Ceiling Fan in Reverse
You should also run your ceiling fan in reverse. This is important for keeping heat contained inside of your home. Remember, heat circulates up and outward and a ceiling fan in reverse will help to stop that process and circulate the warm air around the room.
Trim the Trees to Avoid Falling Frozen Branches
If you haven’t trimmed an overhanging tree branch during the previous summer or at least by fall, then do it right away. The last thing you wan to experience is a frozen falling tree branch smashing into your roof or into the walls of your home.
Get your Snowblower and Shovels Ready for Use
When the winter arrives, snow will eventually come to many places. You will need to make sure your snowblower doesn’t have any problems and that you have your shovels ready as well. Having these tools and equipment will help to keep you ready to deal with the heavy fallen snow.
Bring Spring and Summer Items Inside
You should bring all of your summer and spring equipment and tools inside before the cold sets in. If you have patio furniture that is not designed for year round use, bring that in as well. Do not leave items such as lawnmowers, leaf blowers or electric hedge trimmers just lying around in the snow. They could be ruined by the cold and moisture.
Consider Winterizing your Doors
You should think about getting some storm windows and doors for the winter. These fixtures are very useful for keeping heat inside of your home when the temperatures are freezing outside. Plus, if you are experiencing cold winter drafts, consider caulking them to keep your home’s warm air inside.
Drain your Water Heater
Drain your water heater (if you have one) at least once a year. Otherwise, you could encounter some issues during the winter months with a malfunctioning water heater unit. This is another important thing that should be done before the cold arrives.