Before the first big snowstorm of the year, prepare your home for the winter. It can save you money, protect your home, and make your property safe. It will also keep your home warm and cozy when the cold winds begin to blow. Here are six tasks for your winter home checklist.

1.Prepare the Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning Systems for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

It is crucial for safety and air quality that the heating, ventilating and air conditioning in a home is maintained and inspected for winter. It can also save you money. Here are important tasks to do to prepare your heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems for winter.

  • Make sure the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are working
  • Remove or cover air conditioners from windows
  • Check for drafts in the fireplace caused by a worn out damper
  • Clean or replace the air filter in the furnace
  • Flush the water heater tank and make sure the pressure relief valve is working
  • Clean the firebox and flue system and check for cracks or voids
  • Clean your whole house humidifier and replace the evaporator pad
  • Bleed valves on hot-water radiators
  • Install foam-insulating sheets behind outlets and switch plates on exterior walls
  • Turn fans to the clockwise position so that warm air blows down
  • Plug up any leaks in exposed ducts in the attic, basement, and crawl spaces

2. Prepare the Garden and Lawn for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

Getting your garden and lawn ready for the winter will ensure a beautiful spring landscape. Here are several tips to keep your lawn and garden healthy and free of damaging insects, mice, and mold throughout the winter months.

  • Trim the lawn to 1.5 -3.0 cm
  • Prune summer and fall blooming woody plants, vines, shrubs and trees
  • Aerate the lawn, reseed, and apply a winterizing fertilizer
  • Trim overgrown branches back from the house and electrical wires
  • Make sure the dirt grade around the exterior of your home slopes away from the house
  • Remove attached hoses and store them away
  • Wrap outside faucets with covers
  • Shut off exterior faucets. Drain water from outdoor pipes, valves, and sprinkler heads to protect against pipe bursts

3. Prepare the Deck and Outdoor Lighting for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

Getting your deck and outdoor lighting ready for winter is important for safety. It is also essential for preventing deterioration and damage over the winter. Here are several tasks for preparing your deck and outdoor lighting for winter.

  • Inspect decks for splintering, decay, or insect damage and treat, if needed
  • Clean leaves, dirt, and pine needles between the boards of wooden decks to prevent mold and mildew growth.
  • Check handrails on exterior stairs to make sure they’re well secured
  • Inspect outdoor lighting to lessen the chance of nighttime mishaps on icy walkways
  • Clean, cover or store the grill and patio furniture

4. Preparing Your Windows and Doors for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

Getting your windows and doors ready for winter will prevent heat loss, save money and maintain the structural integrity of your home. Here are a few tasks for preparing your window and doors for winter.

  • Replace worn out weatherstripping around windows and door frames
  • Repair any rot or decay around the windows and doors
  • Repair gaps or cracks in windows and doors
  • Replace all screen doors with storm doors
  • Install storm windows

5. Prepare Tools and Machinery for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

Maintaining and properly storing your tools and machinery in the winter will prevent rust and increase their lifespan. It can also ensure the tools and machinery are ready in the spring. Here are several tasks for preparing your tools and machinery for winter.

  • Spray a coat of lightweight oil on the seasonal tools and store inside
  • Clean and store the lawn mower
  • Purchase ice melt or sand
  • Make sure the snowblower, shovels, and ice choppers are in good condition and easily accessible when the first blast of snow arrives

6. Prepare the Roof, Gutters, and Drains for Winter

Winter Home Checklist

Getting your roof, gutters, and drains ready for winter is important for maintaining your home’s structure. It can prevent water damage around the foundation from snowmelt. It can also keep insects, birds, and rodents from getting inside to nest. Here are several tasks for getting your roof, gutter and drains ready for winter.

  • Replace any missing, damaged or warped shingles
  • Clean leaves and debris from courtyard and pool storm drains
  • Clean gutters of debris
  • Secure and fasten gutters and downspouts
  • Make sure downspouts extend away from the house by at least 5 feet
  • Cover vents and openings around the house
  • Replace deteriorating flashing at the walls, skylights, chimney, and vent pipes. Then seal joints where water could penetrate

Preparing your home for winter will protect your home, save you money, and ensure the safety of those that live in it. For more information on preparing your home for winter visit Falconcrest Homes.

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