Winter Home Maintenance Checklist – Just when it becomes time to bundle yourself up, it becomes time to bundle up your home as well. A little work upfront may prevent some serious damage that winter weather can do to your home. Follow this simple checklist to prep your home for those long winter months.
1. Ready your water system: Pack up your hoses, stow them away and make sure to turn off your outdoor water system valves for the winter months. Additionally, winterize your home irrigation system by bringing in an expert or doing it yourself. Irrigation systems need to be cleaned of excess water to prevent damage to the whole system.
2. Seal your doors and windows: Buy some caulk next time you hit the hardware store, and seal any cracks or small holes in the ceiling and walls near your doorways and windows. This will prevent moisture from getting into your walls, as well as air from leaking in. Additionally you can buy self-adhesive weather-stripping tape for doorframes to make those doors extra tight against winter winds.
3. Unclutter those gutters: Once the leaves have fall have run their course, clean them out of your gutters! Cleaning debris from gutters will prevent ice from building up and potentially damaging their functionality.
4. Prep your roof: Call in an expert to look for loose shingles on your roof, or signs of roof decay. If damaged, fix immediately to prevent further damage and to keep the interior of your home nice and dry for winter months.
5. Service the furnace: Regular maintenance of a furnace is one of the best ways to ensure your heating system’s longevity and efficiency. Before the cold rolls in, order your furnace a check-up with a local handyman. Additionally change your heating system’s filters every few months.
6. Sweep your chimney: If you have a fireplace, look up the chimney to check out conditions. Make sure the damper is free of obstructions and get the flue cleaned every few years. If your fireplace is wood burning, stock up on firewood now to save you some chopping in the cold later.
7. Prune trees and bushes: Trim the tall trees and bushes near and around your home to prevent scratching from branches as they grown heavy with ice from cold weather. It is good practice to keep long limbs at least 3 feet from your home.
8. Cover the AC: Protect your air conditioning unit with a strong tarp or cover to keep it safe in harsh winter conditions. This simple task can save you large amounts of money down the road.
Preparing the outside of your home is just as important as preparing the inside. Once the exteriors is ready, stock up on some food, good books and movies, and relax knowing that despite the cold weather outside, you will make it through the long cold months with few worries about your home.