When it starts to get cold outside, it is important to start your winterizing routine, especially in an older house. Otherwise precious heat will from seep out of your home, and frigid air will sneak inside. However, winterizing isn’t just about sealing up leaks; there are several other measures that need to be taken to ensure your home is ready for the winter season. Here are a few tips that will help get your house ready for the coldest season of the year.
1. Seal Windows and Doors
Sealing any leaks around your windows and doors is the first big step in winterizing, ensuring that each window is sealed as tightly as possible. To do so, you can either use plastic cling wrap around the windows or use bubble wrap for more efficient insulation. If you seal with plastic wrap, be sure to do so early in fall before the weather gets too cold, otherwise you’ll have a difficult time trying to get your plastic wrap to seal tightly enough.
You also want to be sure to take out any window air conditioning units. Additionally, any air conditioner units that are built into or outside the house should be covered to prevent leaking cold into your home.
Because doors often leak even after they are closed, another good idea is to set up magnetic striping along doors at all the edges to keep the frame sealed.
2. Check Furnaces, Ductwork, and Filters
Not using your furnace for months can make it dusty and dirty; The cleaner your furnace is, the better heat you’ll get throughout the chilly months. This kind of winterizing may seem easy, but you may need a professional to help you do it correctly if you’re inexperienced. Duct work is the same; make sure your ducts are clean and in good working order before you need them to function in full blast. These steps are especially important because when it gets cold, things can break much more easily. You need to make sure that everything that is frequently used during the winter is working at its best.
In addition, you should replace your filters. People often forget to do it, but it can shock a lot of homeowners to learn how much of an affect using an old filter can have on their HVAC systems. Replacing your filters is a major step in winterizing your home. It is simple, can help you save money, and promises cleaner heat.
3. Check for Property Issues
Winterizing your home means working not only on the inside, but on the outside of your home as well. If there are any cracks or small leaks around your home, sealing them now is a solid winterizing decision. Small and inconsequential leaks or cracks around your home can actually cause quite a bit of trouble later on when the weather gets colder. Cold, just like intense heat, tends to exacerbate issues that already exist, so when you feel the weather start to change, make sure to seal up issues that could cause a major problem later.
To prevent potential property issues, keep in mind the common problems that occur during the season. When harsh weather comes through, the first things to fall and hit your car or roof are the tree branches, which can get heavy from ice and accumulated snow. Make sure to trim them back and away from your home.
4. Clean, Drain, and Dry Anything With Water
Pools, hot tubs, sprinklers, and hoses all need to go through a winterizing routine because they need to not only be cleaned, but also be dried out. If there is any water in them, the water will freeze and cause damage.
Clean debris from your well windows and from your gutters. You can use a high-pressure air hose to help clean out hoses and pipes to keep them from collected dollops of water from remaining and freezing in them during the winter months.
Make sure all water from your pool is drained and that you wash it before covering it up. Pools often come with instructions for winterizing, so be sure to follow them carefully to make sure that your pool remains ready to use next summer.
Also, use plastic wrap or insulation on any parts that need remain outside and subjected to the elements so that they don’t crack.
5. Check Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Another important aspect of winterizing task is taking preventative measures. Making sure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in tip-top shape is a priority because you will be in your home more during the winter and more likely to cook indoors. Make sure you must make sure that your oven and furnace are not emitting carbon monoxide or smoke by routinely cleaning your oven to keep it from smoking and by getting your furnace checked out before turning it on for the season. Carbon monoxide is deadly and impossible for humans to detect, so make sure that the carbon monoxide detector you have works well.