winter checklist

Winter Checklist: How To Prepare Your Home For Winter

Winter’s extreme temperatures and water can wreak havoc on an unprepared home. How can you prepare your home to withstand winter’s harsh conditions?

Use our winter checklist to prepare for the coming season.

1. Check All Windows

If there are leaks in your window and door sealing, then your utility bills will skyrocket once the weather starts to cool down. The expensive heat your furnace makes will leak out through tiny holes instead of staying inside to keep your family comfortable.

Before the weather turns, grab a ladder and go to each window. Look for leaks and feel for airflow through the edges of each window. One of the keys to an energy-efficient home is tightly sealed windows.

And while you’re at it, you can clean the screens and outside window panes.

2. Every Winter Checklist Includes Cleaning The Gutters

Once a majority of the leaves have fallen, it’s important that you check the gutters around the full perimeter of your house and remove any debris.

Leaves and other debris can cause water to pool in the gutter, freeze, and crack.

It can also prevent water and snow from draining properly which can cause expensive problems with your roof.

3. Check Out the Roof

While you’re up on a ladder examining gutters, check out your roof for any loose shingles or damaged parts. 

Look at chimneys and other air release valves. If any repairs are needed, get them taken care of before snowfall.

4. How’s Your Furnace?

Many HVAC companies offer inexpensive “tune-ups” where they examine your furnace equipment and do small repairs. If you call in early fall, you’ll be able to beat the rush of people scrambling to make sure their homes are warm.

It’s best to get a tune-up before you need to turn on your furnace. And don’t forget to change your furnace air filter.

5. Empty Hoses and Shut Off Outside Water

After mowing the lawn for the last time, collect all the water hoses in the yard. Drain them, roll them up, and store them in a dry enclosed space.

Shut off the outdoor water and make sure the spigots are clear of water. Any remaining water in pipes or hoses will freeze and could expand and crack, causing serious problems and expensive repairs.

6. Visit the Basement

Walk the outside edge of your basement to look for any water or cracks. These are more easily repaired during the warmer weather.

Small cracks can typically be repaired without having to call a professional, but if a large crack appears and continues to grow, the frozen ground could make it worse.

Water damage looks like a dark spot on a concrete wall, but on finished walls can look like bubbling paint or a dark spot.

Treat any water damaged spots.

7. Give the Yard One Last Cleaning

Trim the lawn one last time, clear the lawn of grass clippings, leaves, and other debris.

Weed and clear the garden beds of annual plants that will die in the winter.

And don’t forget to plant bulbs for bright, spring flowers.

8. Stock Up on Your Winter Gear

Make sure you’re stocked up on ice-melt, a sturdy snow shovel, antifreeze, and low-temperature windshield wiper fluid.

Store emergency supplies like flashlights, blankets, and food in case of a winter power outage.

Winter Is Coming

Winters are unpredictable and can range from mild to severe. Make sure you and your house are ready for whatever comes with this fool-proof winter checklist.

Contact us today for more info!