Its time around the year when days go shorter and temperature falls and time to prepare you home for the long winter ahead. A great way to start is to take a walk around the house and visually inspect important systems that need a routine maintenance and prepare a winter maintenance.
Here are some points to add to your checklist:
- Clean gutters and downspouts: A clogged up gutter or downspouts can freeze and wreak your home. Hence, do a thorough clean before temperature drops below 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors: Use the testing feature on each device and make sure it’s working. Replace batteries and repair all components as needed.
- Check furnace vents and filters: Ensure that vents in primary living areas are open and unobstructed. Dirty furnace filters waste energy.Owner’s manual explain what types of filters are best suited for your furnace and how often they need to be replaced.
- Replace worn out weather strips: Worn out weather strips around windows and doors will increase home heating costs.
- Inspect the insulation in attics and crawl spaces: Fiberglass insulation panels sag away from rafters, joists and wall cavities, allowing cold air to penetrate your home. Duct tape can be used to reseat a small problem area, but extensive sagging may indicate a moisture problem. Try to determine the source of this problem before you replace large areas of insulation. And, if you decide to replace the insulation yourself, make sure you follow manufacturer guidelines for personal protective equipment.
- Protect exterior water valves: Hose bibs in an unheated garage or on the outside of your home need protection to prevent freezing damage. Low cost insulating covers are available at most home centres.
While these are a few quick home maintenance tips from home inspectors on preparing your home for the winter, this list is not all inclusive. If you would like additional help in preparing your home for winter, send us a message.