Winterize your Home in 5 Steps
Shorter days and cooler temperatures are around the corner. A few simple maintenance checks can help reduce maintenance and save money on your utility bill this winter. Here are 5 quick checks for your home before winter begins:
Check Windows and Doors for Leaks – Air leaks can add significant expense to your utility bill if not addressed immediately. There are a few effective methods for finding leaks, simply giving a detailed eye test to both the inside and outside of your windows and doors for any glaring gaps, old caulking, or inconsistencies can be a good start. To check for smaller leaks that may not be visible try using a handheld infrared thermometer around the outside of your windows and doors to check for cooler temperatures where you think there may be a leak.
Clean Gutters & Downspouts – Summer rain can leave a significant amount of debris in your gutters and downspouts before the winter months. If not cleaned regularly, build up can cause permanent damage to your roof and drainage system. One preventative measure that can be taken to help stop gutters from clogging is to install “gutter guards” that clip underneath the shingles on your roof and go over the top of your gutters. A modest sized house can be fitted with protective guards for as little as $50.
Furnace Maintenance – A few simple preventative checks can ensure you won’t have any furnace maintenance issues this winter. First things first, make sure your filter is clean and in working order. It’s recommended you check your furnace filter monthly and change it at least once every 3 months. It’s also advisable to turn your furnace on for a test run before temperatures get too cold. If you are having any major issues be sure to submit a service request to maintenance. (link to sms portal)
Clean Fireplace – Get your fireplace ready for those cold winter nights. Clean from the bottom up starting with your chimney. This is probably the safest way to clean as it doesn’t require you to get up onto your roof. Although this method is probably the safest, it can also be messy so make sure to spend extra time taping/covering your floors and living room furniture. You can buy a chimney cleaning kit from most hardware stores that includes a brush with extension rods.
Flush Irrigation System – Flush your sprinklers before freezing temperatures hit to prevent any permanent damage to your irrigation system. The best method to use will depend on how your system is set up. Here is a step by step guide that should walk you through each.
Now that your home is winterized, stay warm with the perfect cup of hot chocolate!