|Posted on December 18, 2017 at 12:55 AM|
This is the first in a series of tasks that should be performed before winter starts!
It doesn't matter if you shun the cold weather or embrace it, winter is quickly approaching. Here are some tasks to tackle now to make sure your home is ready for the season.
* Make Sure Your Heating System is Ready
Depending on the type of heating system you have, there are a few home maintenance things you should do before the temperatures really start to dip. First, make sure you change the air filter regularly. If you have a high-efficiency system, PVC vent pipes need to be cleared of any obstructions. And those with a boiler system should have their system cleaned every year. Those with gas should have a cleaning about every three years.
* Check the Fireplace and Chimney
If you use your fireplace, have it cleaned by a chimney sweep. You should also check for any debris and cracks in the chimney. And creosote buildup and debris such as leaves and bird nests could become a fire hazard.
* Check Batteries in Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, heating is the cause of 27 percent of structure fires during the winter months. So make sure all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working in your home. And it's best to have smoke alarms in every room of your home, including hallways. Be sure that home maintenance includes checking the batteries in all alarms once a month is always on your home maintenance checklist.
* Prevent Pipes from Freezing
When water freezes, it expands and can cause your pipes to burst. To prevent frozen pipes, insulate pipes near windows, doors and in areas of the home that are unheated. Disconnect your garden hose from the outside faucet. Finally, set the heat to no lower than 55 degrees F.
* Test Your Sump Pump
Your sump pump will help you keep your basement dry during the wet season, so make sure it's working properly. Slowly pour a few gallons of water into the pit to make sure the pump turns on. The typical lifespan of a sump pump is 10 years. And make sure it last this long with your home maintenance checklist.
To be continued....
* Prepare for a Storm
Power outages are common during winter storms, so make sure you're prepared with a survival kit. Your winter home maintenance checklist should include stocking up on bottled water, non-perishable food, flashlights, first-aid supplies, batteries and a smart phone charger.
* Protect Entryways
All that snow, ice and mud can wreak havoc on your entryway floors. Place mats both inside and outside the door, along with boot trays inside the entryway. And make sure your mudroom is ready with a place to dry wet jackets, hats, mittens and gloves.
* Check for Air Leaks
Act now on your home maintenance checklist to save on heating costs during the winter months. And check for air leaks around windows and doors, including cracks in caulking or weatherstripping. Also, replace caulk and weatherstripping if necessary.
* Stop Ice Dams from Forming
If your home is prone to icicles and ice dams, take steps now to make sure you have proper insulation and venting. And you can also prevent ice dams by raking the snow off your roof and installing heat cables.
* Check the Roof
Give the roof a good look before winter hits. Are there any loose or missing shingles that may result in leaks from melting snow? And use your home maintenance checklist as an excuse to check for any broken seals around vents and the chimney.
To be continued....