Don’t get caught off guard when winter arrives, have your home prepared for the colder weather. A few simple checks and fixes can save you a lot of time and money in the long run.

Check the Attic

You probably haven’t been up there since you put away the Christmas decorations from last year so now is a good time to inspect your attic. While up there you should first check that there aren’t any animals making their home in the crawl space (ie. raccoons, squirrels etc.) Check that the ventilation is properly fitted to allow air flow and nothing else. Check that there is adequate insulation and that it is spread evenly.

Clean Your Eavestroughs

Clean the leaves and debris from your gutters to prevent water back up. All downspouts should be cleared and pointed away from the buildings foundation so that water doesn’t pool. Water in the eavestroughs can cause problem when the weather reaches freezing. It can damage your soffit and fascia as well as create a dangerous falling hazard for ice.

Clean Your Ducts

Have your ducts cleaned and your filters replaced. Throughout the winter months you will probably be spending more time inside and by having your heating ducts cleaned will reduce the amount of dust and particles that will be circulated. This also increase the system's efficiency and will reduce heating costs.

Inspect Your Window and Doors

There is nothing worse than having a cool draft flowing through your home in the winter. Visually inspect the interior and exterior of all your windows and doors for any gaps in the seals. These can be fixed by using caulking and weather striping as well as draft stopper that fit on interior doors; a rolled towel is also great hack that works for this too.

Chimney Preparation

If you have a chimney that is used regularly it is important to have it serviced. Inspect the exterior smoke stack for any damage, like cracks in the mortar and loose bricks and have they repaired accordingly. It is also a good idea to have the chimney sweep to remove and soot that may cause a fire risk. If the chimney is out of use then make sure the damper is closed or you use a chimney balloon to block unwanted heat escape.

Yard Preparation

Remove all outdoor hoses and drain the pipes to prevent any ruptures from freezing and potential backups into the house. If you have an inground sprinkler system drain it all well. This can be done using a siphon technique or more simply by using an air compressor. If there is a lot of snow expected mark out terrain feature with flag markers to avoid hitting when they can’t be seen.

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