Winter is coming...

 

As you are enjoying the change in weather it is time to make sure that your home is prepared for the coming winter season. Preventative maintenance now can save you money on expensive emergency repairs and energy costs. Properly maintaining your home also enhances its value and appeal.

Here are 7 things to check before winter arrives:

Furnace Inspection

Before the weather turns and the furnaces need to run full time, it’s a good idea to have your furnace checked for leaks, heating efficiency as well as to have the filter changed.

Inspect the exterior

Check the exterior of the house to ensure that there is no damage to the shingles, gutters and downspouts. A visual inspection of the roof from the ground using binoculars allows you to see if there are missing, damaged or loose shingles.

Clean the gutters

Clear the gutters by removing leaves and other debris and check for leaks. Also, ensure that the downspouts are clear and directing water away from the house – you don’t want to flood your basement!

Check for & fix drafts: 

Feel for drafts around windows and doors. A lit candle or match make a great tool as they will flicker if a draft is present. To resolve this issue replace the seal or caulking. An alternative is to purchase heavier or insulated window drapes for windows that have a small draft.

Test home safety alarms

With the weather changing and the possibility of staying indoors increasing make sure fire and carbon monoxide alarms are working correctly.

Turn off exterior faucets & store hoses:

Drain garden hoses and disconnect them from the faucets. Shut off all exterior faucets, and turn off the outside valve inside your home to prevent freezing. Once hoses are removed and fully drained, store them in a dry place to avoid freezing and cracking so they can be used again in the spring.

Prepare the yard for winter:

Apply lawn fertilizer in fall to help to prevent winter damage and spring weeds. It is also a good idea to inspect trees in the yard. Ensuring they do not have damaged limbs that could break off and land on the roof or nearby electrical wires.

With winter around the corner, take a few moments to make sure that your home is ready for the coming weather changes. Preventative maintenance will save money in the long run and, most importantly, it will help your family stay comfortable this winter!  

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