How to Prepare Your Home for Winter

With winter just around the corner, it’s time to prepare your home to help ensure a warm, safe, and cozy season ahead. Here’s a checklist of 10 things to help you get your home ready for winter:

1. Inspect Your Heating System

Before the cold weather sets in, have a professional service your heating system. Routine maintenance will help ensure it runs efficiently and prevent any breakdowns during the chilly months.

2. Check Your Drainage

Clean your gutters and downspouts to ensure proper drainage away from your home. Clogged gutters can lead to ice dams, which can cause costly damage to your roof and siding.

3. Prevent Pipes from Freezing

Insulate exposed pipes in unheated attics, basements, and crawl spaces. Remember to drain external pipes and hoses. Letting faucets drip during extremely cold nights can help prevent pipes from freezing.

4. Check for Air Leaks

Seal gaps and cracks around windows and doors to help prevent drafts and heat loss. Weatherstripping and caulk are handy tools for this task. Replace problem windows before the first snowfall to improve energy efficiency and keep the cold air outside your home.

5. Inspect Your Roof & Siding

Look for damaged or missing shingles on your roof and repair them promptly. Inspect your siding for signs of damage that may allow cold air and moisture to creep in. If you have significantly rotted, warped, peeling or faded board, consider replacing your siding in the spring.

6. Prepare for Snow Removal

Ensure you have the necessary equipment for snow removal, such as shovels, snow blowers, and ice melt. Stock up on these items early to avoid shortages during heavy snowfall.

7. Service Your Chimney and Fireplace

If you have a fireplace or wood-burning stove, have your chimney cleaned and inspected to ensure proper ventilation and reduce the risk of chimney fires.

8. Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Replace batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and test them to ensure they are in working order.

9. Trim Trees and Bushes

Prune any overhanging branches or bushes that could become heavy with snow and potentially damage your home in winter storms.

10. Stock Up on Winter Supplies

Stock your home with essentials like blankets, flashlights, candles, and non-perishable food items in case of power outages or severe winter storms.

Remember that early preparation can save you time, money, and headaches in the long run. By preparing your home for winter, you can enjoy a warm and worry-free season.