Preparing your home for winter is one of the most daunting tasks as a homeowner. It involves taking stock of some of the more complicated systems in your home and ensuring that they’re all ready to face chilly temperatures and potential snowfalls. By tackling these tasks sooner rather than later, you’ll be able to keep your home in good condition, protect your family from dangerous winter weather, and prevent your heating bills from getting too high. Let’s take a look at a few of the most important ways you can prepare your home for the coming winter.
Although you may not pay much attention to it normally, your hot water heater is an incredibly important part of your home. It’s what allows you to have hot water coming out of your faucets and it may also be responsible for the heat in your home, depending on what kind of heating system you have. This makes it essential that you inspect your hot water tank before chilly winter weather sets in.
Start your inspection by checking for cracks in your water tank. As a water tank nears the end of its life, it can start to crack. Depending on your level of maintenance, conventional water heaters last 10 to 12 years. If yours is reaching that age, you may need to replace it before winter comes. If you see no visible signs of damage on your hot water tank, just make sure that it is actually getting warm and giving you hot water.
Anything on the exterior of your home is going to take the brunt of the winter weather you get this year. Make sure that your outdoor spaces and the exterior of your home are ready to stand up to potentially harsh winter weather before it hits your area. Start by moving all outdoor appliances and furniture indoors. Store any grills, lawnmowers, planters, chairs, and tables in your garage or shed for the winter. Remember to also pick any remaining veggies you have in your garden. About 42% of people who spend time gardening at home say they felt healthy and happy but you likely won’t feel so joyful if you lose your homegrown produce to the winter’s first frost.
You’ll also have to pay a bit of attention to the exterior features of your home. Make time to clean out your gutters before the winter weather sets in so that snow and ice don’t clog them up. Ice adds enough weight to your gutters on its own and they don’t need the added weight of wet leaves and dirt. You can also use this time to consider whether you’ll need to freshen up your home’s exterior painting. While you should wait until the harsh winter weather passes before doing this, think about how long it been since your home was painted. If you have stucco on the exterior of your home, it’s recommended that you paint it every five years. If it’s time for a fresh coat, make plans to do it as soon as the cold weather passes.
If your home has a fireplace and chimney, make sure to get your yearly inspection before you light it up. Clogged chimneys are very dangerous, as they can lead to house fires and cause carbon monoxide poisoning. While you’ll spend some money getting a professional to inspect your chimney, it could save your family’s life. This inspection can also help you save money in the long run, as a fully-functional chimney flue can help prevent drafts when you’re not using your fireplace.
When you’re diligent about preparing your home for winter, you can better protect your family and your property. Follow these tips soon and you’ll stay safe and cozy all winter long.
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