Preparing Your Home for the Winter

Summer is coming to an end, and fall is almost upon us. Before we know it, the temperatures will be dropping and winter will have arrived. Is your home ready to withstand the Metro-East’s cold, harsh winter season? We have the tips to help you
prepare:

Check your windows and doors for drafts. If you can feel air flow coming into your house through a closed window or door, it is time to seal or replace them. You may not notice the effects now, but when winter arrives, the draft will take a toll on both your furnace and wallet. When replacing your windows, shop for energy efficient styles, as they will make it much easier to maintain a consistent, comfortable temperature in your home. While these replacements may seem costly and unnecessary right now, they will save you money on your monthly energy bill and prevent you from being forced to buy a new heater later.

– Insulate your attic. If your home is not properly insulated, warm air can easily escape your home. Since heat rises, insulating your attic is especially important for the winter season. Not only will insulation keep your home more comfortable during the colder months, but it will also control your attic’s humidity levels. This will greatly reduce the chances of mold growing in your home and prevent costly damages from arising in the future.

– Prepare your plumbing. Now is the time to drain water from your outdoor faucets and hoses, and bring your garden hoses into the garage or basement. It is also important to check your pipes, and to fix any leaks. In the unheated, colder areas of your home, you should wrap the pipes with either heat tape and/or pipe insulation. This will decrease the chances of these pipes freezing and bursting. If you have had problems with your water heater before, have a professional come inspect it to ensure it is running properly and ready for the cold.

– Get your furnace ready. If your heater has been sitting idle for months on end, you should inspect it prior to cranking the heat. Overtime, it is likely that your furnace has gathered dust and other small debris and needs to be cleaned. If you do not feel confident cleaning it, you can have a professional clean it as well as inspect it to ensure it is working properly.

– Test your thermostat. If your thermostat malfunctions, your heater will not work properly, which will leave your family cold and uncomfortable. Turn your thermostat on, and adjust the temperature so that is higher than the actual temperature of the room. The heat should kick on within a matter of minutes. Then, after around 20 minutes, use a thermometer to check the reading on the thermostat to ensure it is accurate. If it does not match, you may need to replace your thermostat.

Make sure your home is warm, comfortable and inviting this winter season by following these simple steps. The team at Gori, Realtors® wishes you the happiest winter season!