Whether we’d like to admit it or not, winter is right around the corner. That means, even though you’ve just finished your fall yard maintenance, it’s time to start prepping for freezing temperatures.
Winterize Your Home
Most of the things you need to do for winter are simple – in fact, you can winterize your home on a Saturday afternoon.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Change your furnace filters. If your furnace is relatively new, you probably don’t need to have it serviced; a simple filter change should suffice. However, if you have any doubts about whether your furnace is going to make it through the winter, it’s a good idea to call a professional.
- Winterize your air conditioning unit and water lines. It’s usually a good idea to have a professional handle the A/C unit.
- Turn down your water heater. You don’t need to maintain such a high temperature throughout the winter; you’ll only end up costing yourself more money on water that you don’t use.
- If you have a smart thermostat, program it for winter use.
- Make sure you insulate your pipes – particularly those located on the outside walls of your home.
- Get your fireplace ready. If you haven’t had it cleaned recently, now is a great time to call a chimney sweep. It’s also a great time to stock up on firewood, which you’ll need to store in a dry place away from the exterior of your home. Make sure your fireplace damper opens and closes properly, and make sure a cap or screen is in place on the top of your chimney to keep out unwanted guests.
- Check on your roof, gutters and downspouts. Ice dams can form when warm air creeps up to your roof and melts snow, so make sure all of your insulation is intact. Clean out your gutters and use a hose to spray water down the downspouts to clear away debris. Your gutters can burst if ice develops in them during the winter.
- Service your outdoor equipment. Drain the gas from your lawn mower, tune up your snow blower, and make sure your shovels are in good shape. Now is also a great time to stock up on bags of salt to melt the ice, too.
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