10 Simple Tips to Winterize Your Home
Now that fall has almost ended, it's time to think ahead and prepare your home for winter. These simple tips can make your home more comfortable, reduce energy consumption, and go a long way to reducing any future repair costs.
•1. Clean your gutters and downspouts. Debris can cause water backup and ice dams in some climates. Make sure your gutters drain away from the house.
•2. Cover foundation vents to prevent cold air from getting under the house and freezing pipes. Remove the covers in the spring.
•3. Add insulation if needed. Look in your attic. If you can see the beams, you need additional insulation. Check with your local utility to see if they offer any incentives for adding insulation.
•4. Replace your furnace filter. Turn off the gas and electric and vacuum all accessible areas.
•5. Turn off the water to any exterior water pipes or wrap them if they have no shut off valve.
•6. Install your storm windows if you have single pane windows.
•7. Seal and insulate your heating ducts. Crawl under the house and see if any ductwork has separated. Repair, seal, and insulate as needed. Use the "foil type" duct tape.
•8. Inspect your doors. Replace any worn out thresholds and weather stripping.
•9. Install a programmable thermostat. This can save you up to 20% of your winter heating costs.
•10. Check your fireplace and chimney. Repair any cracks in the mortar and make sure the flue is clean and free of any bird or animal nests.