Summer has come and gone, and the cool, colorful days of autumn are upon us. Now is the perfect time to get your home ready for winter’s coming chill. Here are some tips for making sure you and your family stay comfortable when the weather outside is blustery and cold.
Consider hiring a home inspector to do an inspection on your home once every 2-3 years. This is a great way to catch issues before they become larger issues. An inspector will discover missing or damaged shingles, loose flashing, moisture issues and things that can lead to moisture issues which can result in mold problems.
Brush up the Exterior
Your home’s purpose is to provide shelter from the dangers and discomforts of the outdoors. Making sure it’s up to the job requires you to take care of issues that could otherwise balloon into catastrophes. So start your winterizing project with the following tasks:
- Trim your trees, hedges, bushes, and any vegetation that comes in contact with your home. While you’re at it, add fertilizer to your lawn to help it spring back to life next year.
- Cover your flower beds or garden soil with a thick layer of organic mulch.
- Clean out your gutters. According to Reader’s Digest, the best time to do this job is in the fall, before you run the risk of ice and snow clogging the system.
- Check for cracks or gaps around window and door sills and wherever pipes enter your home. Fill the open spaces with caulk to prevent energy-stealing drafts from driving up your utility bills.
- If you’re not already mulching your grass clippings, leaves, and kitchen scraps, then fall is a great season to get into the habit. Compost is unbeatable for making flowers and vegetables healthy and vibrant.
- Turn off outside water faucets, remove garden hoses, and store them away. You may want to install freeze-proof outdoor faucets as an added precaution. If you have a sprinkler system, then cut the water flow and drain the pipes. Best to have a lawn irrigation company service the lines properly and blowout the lines to help ensure against freeze damage
- If your home has a functioning chimney, then call a chimney sweep to give it a good cleaning. This is a vital safety precaution, especially if you use your fireplace often during the winter.
Once these items have been checked off the list, refer to Redfin’s great list of additional home maintenance tasks to stay on top of. Then, shift your focus to the indoors.
Preparing the Interior for Old Man Winter
Make sure the inside of your home is ready for the cold season by following these tips:
- Give your fireplace a good cleaning and check the flue to ensure it’s in proper working order. Make sure you clean out any soot or ashes left over from previous winters.
- Inspect your furnace and replace filters as necessary. It’s a good idea to have a professional check your heating system for proper functioning.
- Check your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and install fresh batteries.
- Inspect your humidifiers and replace filters if necessary. A humidifier is vital for keeping your home comfortable during those long winter months.
- Give your home a top to bottom cleaning. You’ll spend a lot of time indoors during winter, so you might as well make the surroundings as pleasant as possible.
- Check your generator (if you own one) and have a qualified service technician fix any problems you notice. According to Family Handyman, this is essential for your well-being.
- Store summer lawn equipment like mowers and trimmers. Move items like snow blowers to the front of your storage shed or garage for easy retrieval when you need them.
- Purchase a few extra gallons of fuel for your generator, chainsaw, and other equipment you may use during winter.
- Make sure you have plenty of rock salt or a similar product on hand.
- Stock up on firewood, either by ordering a supply or cutting your own.
Following these tips will help you to face the coming winter with a smile on your face. So give it your best effort, then kick back and watch the seasons change while you stay snug and warm.
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