Whether you like it or not, the winter season and colder months are right around the corner. Ensuring you have prepared your home for the weather to come is crucial in maintaining its condition. Although, this can take some major planning. Below, is a list of important “to-do’s” before winter rolls around. Have you checked off everything on this list?
- Verify Your Supplies: The winter months can enter with a bang so making sure you are prepared for whatever chaos they may bring is important. Be sure to locate your shovel, snow boots, and other outerwear so that the first day you need to use these items, they are accessible. Also, be sure you have enough snow melt or sand on hand to keep your entryways accident-free.
- Test Out Your Fireplace: After a summer of collecting dust, your fireplace can get a bit sluggish. If you have one, inspecting, cleaning, and doing a test run before you begin consistently using it again is a smart idea. This will help to remove any dangerous debris that may be tucked away. Additionally, be sure to test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to make sure they are functioning properly.
- “Winterize” Your Heating System: Your furnace is another appliance that should be tested out before the winter arrives, to avoid any malfunctions once you start using the system on a daily basis again. A good rule of thumb for the first run is to set the temperature to 80 degrees. If the system turns on with no problem, you can turn the temperature back down. If you encounter any difficulty, it may be a good idea to give the service center a call.
- Shut Off Any Exterior Faucets or Sources of Running Water: Frozen pipes can be a recipe for disaster, especially when spring comes, so do yourself a favor and switch off and drain your spigots before winter is here. Garden hoses can be the most detrimental, as built up water inside of the hose can result in burst pipes inside of your home. If you are able to store the hose inside of a shed or garage, this is even better as leaving it can cause wear and tear to the product.
- Cover Any Vents or Openings: Humans are not the only creatures that love the warmth. Many types of animals, specifically small rodents and birds will be looking for spots to keep warm this winter and you do not want the inside of your home to be one of them! Ensure all vents or openings to your home from the outside are covered to prevent these clever animals from sneaking in.
- Separate the Water Service from Your Home: Do this before you purge the water system with the air compressor.
- Prepare Your Dishwasher: Pour antifreeze into your dishwasher and your washing machine after you have purged the water system with your air compressor. This helps prevent your pipes from freezing.
If you are a snowbird, and will be leaving your home for the winter, this YouTube video provides a few additional steps to preparing your home for the colder weather: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9M1QzeTDrSk