The winter season is no joke, especially for those who experience the worst weather condition during this season. Preparing for the frigid temperature and brutal weather conditions is essential. Staying warm in your home is one way to get comfortable during the winter. Here I have discussed the different ways on how you can prepare your home for the winter season.
Get Those Basic Supplies
When it comes to the supplies that you will need, you place yourself in a situation where you can’t leave your home for days on end. It would be best if you got supplies for several days’ worth of nonperishable food and water. Also, you would need warm clothing and blankets in your home, workplace, car, or wherever you might get stuck for several days.
The same thing goes for your other primary needs, such as a three-day supply of medicine such as insulin or inhalers. You will also need pet food if you have pets at home and any food that might be specific to your family’s needs. You also want to think about tools such as emergency communication devices, batteries, chargers, radio, shovel, and long-burning candles. Amazon has several different Emergency Kits to choose from.
Check The Heating System
Now, most heating systems can last for about 12 to 15 years. However, most systems encounter problems by the 10th year line. Plenty of factors on how long your heating system can last would depend on how well it is maintained. So, before the weather gets cold, you need to take the time to change your filters at least.
Make sure to have your systems checked by professional HVAC contractors. This way, you would know whether your systems are in the best shape or not. I usually have my system maintained by my chosen contractors at least once a year. It is always better to prevent the problem than solve them and spend too much money on the repairs.
Don’t Let Your Pipes Freeze
When the water freezes, it expands. With this said, you don’t want it to freeze inside your pipes or around in your home. During extremely cold weather, make sure to water on any faucet served by pipes that are exposed to the cold weather. A trickle would do on these conditions. Also, keep the temperature on your thermostats the same all day and night.
If you are leaving for a certain period, don’t let it lower than 55°F. Next, make sure to open kitchen and bathroom cabinet doors to allow warm air to circulate around the pipes. Remember to keep harmful cleaning products out of children’s and pets’ reach. Keep those garage doors closed if there are any water lines in the garage.
Lastly, consider insulating pipes that are exposed by using heat tapes and insulating sleeves. However, if you don’t have access to these materials, a newspaper will work just as well.
Make Sure To Check Your Attic For Critters
During cold weather, your attic is the perfect winter home for birds, squirrels, and other critters out there. It can cause a lot of damage to your home and even health problems. To avoid any of the critters from entering your attic, you have to trim your trees and make sure that they are well away from the house because it can lead to them entering your home.
Best to install screens behind your gable vent in case any of them enter through that way. Also, make sure that there are no holes that would allow any birds to enter your attic. I ensure to do this every time winter comes around because I don’t want any squirrels or birds entering my home.
Masonry: Don’t Forget About It
It is not just the inside of your home that needs your attention, and you also need to pay attention to your patio. Let’s say you have a concrete patio, driveway, or walkway; make sure they are protected. Apply a concrete sealer on all of your concrete surfaces occasionally to prevent any problems that may come up.
If you cannot do this yourself, you can always seek help from professional masonry contractors in your area. They will take the time to inspect your concrete and fill any cracks that it may have. The masonry process will make sure your expensive concrete will last for a long time.
Get Those Gutters Cleaned
Most of the leaves fall from the trees during the fall season and go straight to your gutters. Make sure that your gutters are cleaned because when they are backed up, they overflow. When they overflow, the water runs down your home, which can lead to leaks or mold inside your home. Water infiltration in the basement as well as under your porches and walkways will create different types of problems.
This is another service that I usually need the help of professionals. They make sure that my gutters are cleaned and ready for the winter season. However, if you are more than capable of doing this job, it is best to do it yourself. This way, you can save money instead of paying for someone to do the job.
Chimney Should Be Cleaned, And Firewood Should Be Ordered
Before you cuddle with your loved ones in front of the fireplace, it is best to have them cleaned and inspected. This way, you can enjoy the cup of hot chocolate in front of your fireplace without any problem. A good chimney sweep will ensure that your fireplace is safe to use and can determine any maintenance problems that you may have.
Getting loads of firewood will also be perfect before the winter season. Stack and cover the wood in a safe location in your yard to prevent it from being wet. Ensure that old firewood isn’t rotten and place it away from your home.
Turn Off The Pool And Sprinkler System
Making sure that your pool is properly shut down and preparing the system for the winter season. It is best to spend a couple of bucks getting an expert to inspect and shut down the system. Fall is the perfect time to get pool work done if there are any problems that are discovered.
Sprinkler systems should be properly shut down, and it requires the lines to be blown out. Same as the pool system, best to hire experts to get the job done. It is still cheaper to hire experts to do the job than to spend money on broken pipes.
Check The Trees
Checking your trees if they are still healthy is critical because, during the winter season, there might be a chance that it could fall on your home or your neighbor’s. It is not as obvious as you may think in spotting a dying tree. There are a lot of times where you wouldn’t notice. If you do spot a dead tree, make sure to hire experts that can do the job.
Fall is not the best time to trim your trees, but if you see any branches against your house, best to trim them away before the winter season comes around. This way, you won’t have any ice-coated branches against your siding or windows. It can also cause severe damages to your home that can be expensive to fix.
Prepare For Snow Removal
When it comes to snow removal, you have to dig out the snowblower and run it before any significant weather condition hits. Ensure that it is ready the next day. When you find that your snowblower is broken, make sure to get it fixed before the winter season comes. If you don’t own a snowblower, you can get one off amazon for less than $200 with free shipping here. You also need to make sure to stock up on sidewalk salt and know where your snow shovel prior to the snow falling. Get a new spring assisted shovel to ease the pain on your back for less than $20.
Prepare Your Lawn
A beautiful spring lawn is what we want during spring, so if you’re going to achieve that, give it attention in the fall. New grass doesn’t grow when it is too cold or too hot. If you want fresh grass to grow, you have September and October, then April and May to get ready. You should overseed your lawn during these times so you can get the perfect lawn for your home.
Remember Your Pets
Do not forget to get your pets ready for the winter season! Make sure they are sheltered, preferably inside the home with you. The daily dog walks are fine as long as the conditions are safe. However, remember to protect your dog’s paws when walking them in the cold. Just like us, your pets can get frostbite on their nose and paw pads.
Make sure that your dogs have enough food for a couple of days, just in case you are not able to leave your home due to difficult weather conditions. I usually have my dogs inside the house with a warm blanket or jacket to keep them warm. Also, I apply a special cream designed for sled dogs on their paw pads to avoid any frostbite when I take them on their walks.
If you are unable to take them on their regular walks because the snow is too high, you play a game of fetch inside your home so that your dogs can still get the exercise they need.