Making sure that your home is ready for winter will save you time and money. It will also help reduce stress from emergency repairs or unexpected complications. Completing a seasonal checklist will give you confidence that your home is prepared to handle the winter weather.
Have A Furnace Inspection
Winter weather can arrive abruptly, even before the official start of the season. The last thing you want is to have a storm hit and find out your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system isn’t working properly. An inspection can help identify seasonal HVAC problems and ensure you can heat your home when the temperatures drop.
Replace Your HVAC Air Filter
Dust and mold can be spread throughout your home if your air filter is dirty. Putting in a new air filter is important for your family’s health, and it will also help save you money. Dirty air filters reduce airflow from HVAC systems. This means the HVAC has to work harder for longer periods of time in order to reach the temperature set on your thermostat. Over time, this leads to increased maintenance costs. You will also have to replace your HVAC system sooner because of the increased wear and tear.
Get Your Fireplace Ready
Regular chimney inspections save lives and prevent property damage. When a fire burns, it leaves creosote behind in the chimney. After 70 fires your chimney should be cleaned to remove the creosote, which is highly flammable. Creosote can ignite and cause a chimney fire. Chimney fires can damage your chimney and even spread to your home.
Finish Up Yard Work For The Season
Different regions have unique maintenance needs. Turn to professionals from a lawn service in New Braunfels, TX to make sure your yard is ready for winter. Yard maintenance pros will take care of raking leaves, remove dead foliage, and add fertilizer to enrich your soil. You should empty flower pots and put them away to prevent damage from moist soil expanding in the pots when it freezes. Check the trees on your property and have dead limbs or trees removed. This will prevent them from blowing down during a storm and causing damage to your home.
Prevent Water Damage
When water is exposed to cold temperatures it can freeze. External water pipes that connect to hoses or sprinklers are vulnerable during the winter months. The water supply to the pipes should be shut off. Use cans of forced air or an air compressor to push out any water still in your pipes. Make sure you drain water from your sprinklers as well. Detach hoses, drain the water from them, and put them away for the season.
Check Your Gutters
Gutters run along the bottom edges of your roof and help drain water safely. Without your gutters, excess water will pool along all sides of your home. This water can run into your basement and cause water damage. In order for your gutters to work effectively, they need to be empty. When leaves fall from trees they can clog your gutters, allowing water to pool in the gutters. The water and leaves will freeze when temperatures drop, and the weight can cause your gutters to sag or break.
Control Air Flow
A sealant can be used to prevent drafts from windows and doors. Weatherstripping can also be added to doors to ensure a tight seal. Eliminating these drafts will ensure hot air stays inside and the cold air stays out, which will help reduce your home heating costs. You can also reverse the direction of your ceiling fans. This pushes hot air back down so that your home stays warmer.
Stock Up On Emergency Supplies
No matter how prepared you are, there are some things that are out of your control. An ice storm can lead to damaged power lines, leaving you without electricity for hours or even days. Before winter arrives, replace the batteries in your flashlights. Stock up on some extra canned food. A camp stove can be an excellent backup for home cooking in an emergency. Make sure you have new fuel tanks you can use. An oil or gas heater can be used for heat. You should also have extra blankets handy, as well as candles and matches.