15 Ways to Make Sure Your Home is Ready for the Winter Season
With seemingly shorter days and a growing list of social obligations, winter can feel pretty busy. The last thing you want to think about is a long list of home maintenance tasks. But carving out some time early in the season to prepare your home for the months ahead can save you not just time and money, but a big headache if things go awry. Not to mention, preparing your home for the winter ensures a safer environment for both you and your family!
In order to make sure you’re not letting out precious – and expensive – heat during the winter months, make sure there is no unintentional airflow. Add weather stripping around doors and windows, and check your attic insulation to make sure there are no holes. Service your HVAC unit as well to make sure your heat will be working at the first sign of cold weather.
More house fires occur during the winter than any other season. Test your smoke detectors so they are in working order, and also have any furnaces, boilers, or chimneys serviced before the first use of the season.
Add foam insulation to interior pipes, especially those along exterior walls, to keep busted pipes at bay, and make sure you know where your main water shutoff is located. Confirm that any exterior water sources are shut off and drained. Store your hoses and cover outdoor faucets and vents.
It’s also a good idea to clean your gutters after the last of the leaves have fallen to give runoff from melting ice and snow a clear path. Speaking of snow, try to trim or remove any dead branches or trees that could fall under the weight of winter precipitation.
Make the swap to energy efficient or smart windows and thermostats if possible, and set your heat to where it kicks on well above freezing temps. At a minimum, your home should begin heating before it drops to 50 degrees inside.
Lastly, make sure you have all the tools you need to combat the winter weather. Purchase snow shovels, de-icing salt, heaters, and fuel early in the season so that you aren’t met with long lines and empty shelves during an emergency, and keep those items easily accessible throughout the winter.