It’s time to start thinking about tasks to complete around the home before winter arrives. Otherwise, you may be in for a home with chilly drafts, high-energy bills, fire hazards, and other various wintertime headaches. Winter doesn’t have to be this way for you, which is why it’s so important to take the proper precautions before the temperature drops. Here are just a few things you can do to prepare your house for winter.
Prepare Your House for Winter By Weatherstripping Your Windows
If you’re planning to get through the winter with your house nice and toasty, the best thing you can do is make sure your windows are doing their job properly. Weatherstrip all the windows in the house so that cold air stays outside. This way you’re keeping the heat inside your home instead of cranking up your thermostat higher than needed.
Install a Door Sweep
Once you reinforce your windows, it’s time to turn your attention to the other source of heat leaving your house: the door. Check and replace the weatherstripping and install a new door sweep. Both of these will help keep warm air inside your home where it belongs.
Insulate the Attic
So far we’ve established that retaining heat is important to prepare your house for winter. This leads us to one more area of concern: insufficient insulation in the attic. With proper insulation in your attic, you can conserve as much as 30% more heat in your house. Replacing missing insulation is a worthwhile investment that can save you much more than it’ll cost.
Protect Your Pipes
Keeping your outdoor hose out during the winter can cause more trouble than it’s worth since it can expose your pipes to freezing. Plus, frozen pipes have a tendency to burst and cause water damage. Shut off the water valves to your exterior faucets. Then disconnect your hose and store it until the spring. Insulate pipes that are exposed in the crawlspace or basement with foam pipe insulation to reduce the likelihood of them freezing.
Check Your Furnace
You don’t want to discover that your furnace isn’t working well the first time you need it this winter. Make sure it does its job correctly in advance with a few simple steps:
- Test it out to make sure it isn’t making odd smells or noises
- Replace your furnace filters to keep it running smoothly
- Seal up any heat ducts to conserve energy
- Clean out the heat vents to keep the air clean and the vents unobstructed
Prepare Your Fireplace
Finally, for those who plan to spend a lot of time by the fire this season, take precautions to prepare your house for winter. Start by cleaning out your fireplace before you first use it, as any excess material could be flammable. All you need is a wire-brush, some gloves, and a vacuum. It’s a good idea to have a professional inspector inspect your fireplace and chimney to evaluate whether it needs repairs or sweeping.