SHARP HOME

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

How to Prepare Your Home For Winter: A Checklist

Photo by: Mdf 
As we get deeper into fall, and closer to winter, it's important to talk about how to prepare your home for winter. Some measures are not only important, but essential to ensuring your home stays in top shape till spring.

Check your furnace
  • The first thing you should do is have your furnace inspected by an HVAC professional. They can make sure your furnace is in top condition and clean out the ducts as well. You don't want to hit minus-40 degree temperatures only to find out that your furnace isn't able to keep up! 
  • Purchase a supply of furnace filters as well, and be sure to change them monthly. 
Clean out the hoses
  • Drain your garden hoses of water and put the hose into the garage to prevent cracking. 
  • If you have outside air conditioning pipes, be sure to drain them as well. 
Install and maintain detectors
  • If you don't already have smoke detectors on every level of your home, install them! To be extra safe, install multiple smoke detectors on each level and near sleeping areas. 
  • Install a carbon monoxide detector near the furnace if there is not one there already. In addition, have carbon monoxide detectors on all levels of the house. Install them at least 5 feet above the floor and near bedrooms. 
  • Replace old batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. 
Keep your hearth happy
  • A dirty chimney can cause carbon monoxide to seep into your home. Avoid this by hiring a chimney sweep to remove excess soot and other gunk that could inhibit airflow. 
  • Make sure you have a screen or cap at the top of your chimney as well, to keep out animals. 
Inspect the roof
  • Look out for damaged shingles and flashing that can cause leakages into your attic. Replace as needed. 
  • Use a hose to clear your gutters and downspouts of leaves and other debris. 
  • Be sure that your downspouts direct water at least 2 metres away from your home. This will limit the potential for flooding in the spring. 
Protect your plants
  • If you have any sensitive plants, be sure to move them indoors or the garage. 
  • Trim tree branches that hang precariously close to the house. 

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