Preparing your home for winter in Anchorage AK.
It's that time of year again in Anchorage AK, old man winter is upon us. No matter if you love him or loathe him, make sure to keep your house warm and dry this season with these simple house keeping tips. Most emergencies happen at inopportune times so potentially avoid the high call out fees, sleeping in a frozen house or expensive hotels when the temperatures dips.
Check up on the heating and insulation system
Since we live in Anchorage Alaska our winters can range from the balmy/rainy side to the down right frigid, so your heating system will be putting in lots of hours. This calls for proper cleaning and inspection of your HVAC system in addition to insulating the crawlspace and attic. Most HVAC companies run a winter special so take advantage. Clean your HVAC system once per year and change out the filters every six months. Insulating the crawlspace and attic areas will keep the heat inside the living space and prevent the warm air (What I like to called paid for air) from escaping. Make sure to Seal the gaps around windows, plumbing, vents and lighting fixtures, this will also maximize energy efficiency in your home.
Prevent frozen pipes
Avoid frozen pipes this season.....duh!!! But seriously by adding extra insulation to exposed pipes in the crawlspace, basement or attic you can minimize your risk of a catastrophe. Damage due to frozen pipes is common but completely preventable and may cost you THOUSANDS. Taking the precaution to seal, insulate and wrap pipes will prevent cold air from getting into the pipes. Exterior hoses, faucet etc should be drained, disconnected, and shut off for the season. In really cold temperatures leaving a trickle of water running, cracking a cabinet door that has unwrapped pipes and keeping the interior temp constant may provide some additional help.
Winter-proof the exterior
Prevent damage from icy conditions outside by trimming trees and shrubs so they don’t brush against the walls and windows. Regularly inspect your roof for ice dams, which can damage your roof and cause water leakage into the home. Make sure to close any crawlspace vents in the foundation, as a bonus you may want to seal any cracks or small openings so critters can’t burrow in.
Prepare for the worst
In Anchorage Alaska we know a thing or two about winter storms. From a blizzard that dumps two feet of snow in the Anchorage bowl, to the warm Chinook winds that can melt it all in a day, winter time in Anchorage Alaska can be a devastating place for the unprepared. As a reminder get yourself ready for the worst by keeping bottled water, non-perishable food, flashlights, batteries, blankets, and emergency phone numbers on hand.