For many homeowners around the country, fall is a critical season to prepare your house for colder weather. Especially for first time homeowners, or those who have recently moved into your home and have yet to experience a winter in your house, here are some tips to help you prepare!
Check your roof for any signs of damage or moss, clear your gutters and downspouts, and check any vents or small openings to ensure small animals can’t come inside. It is much easier to deal with roof repairs now than dealing with ice dams and leaks mid-winter!
Prep Your Yard
If you have any overgrown shrubs near your house, consider giving them a good trim before the snow flies. Not only can this help your plants survive winter, it will also keep moisture away from your home and make your windows fully visible to let the most sunlight in. While raking your fallen leaves, you may also want to mulch your perennial plants to help them throughout the cold months. Lastly, after your yardwork is complete, turn off the water supply to your exterior faucet, and bring outdoor furniture, grills, and umbrellas indoors.
Seal It Off
Check all of your windows and doors to make sure they close properly, and update any missing or damaged weather-stripping. Also remove summer screens and swap with storm windows if you have them. Doing so will keep you warmer and may even help reduce your heating bills! If you have exposed exterior outlets, cover them with weather guards. Consider resealing your driveway or pathways, if you have small cracks you are concerned about worsening from the freeze/thaw cycle.
Lastly, before the bitter cold sets in, have your furnace or other heating system serviced. Test your smoke detectors and CO alarms. And if you haven’t already, make a snow removal plan, whether it is a tune up on a snowblower, purchasing sand and salt, or making arrangements with a plow company.
And last but not least, if you want to give your house a festive outdoor glow, string up decorative lights earlier than you’ll turn them on, so you’re not battling cold temperatures or ice later on!