Another year seems to be going by faster than we would like, and soon, the coldest months will be upon us. If you want to have that idyllic, cozy winter that we all see in the movies, it’s going to take some work to get there before the snow drops. Our homes are our first line of defense against the harsh outdoors, and we should repay them by making sure they can do their jobs as efficiently as possible. Here we’ve gathered some of the important home projects to do before winter so that you can be ready for the frost.
Clean Out Your Gutters
With the cold comes snow, and with snow comes water—water that is going to need somewhere to go once it melts on top of your house. This is why cleaning out your gutters before winter is so important. You’re not going to want to head out in the frigid cold to snake frozen leaves out of your gutters. Completing this job in the fall will ensure that your home is safe from the excess moisture and that runoff has a place to drain away from the house.
Winterize Your Sprinklers
Your sprinklers aren’t going to have much to do once the snow hits. Whether you hire a professional to blow out your sprinkler line or you do it yourself, it’s ideal to do this before it gets too cold. Any leftover water in your water lines when it gets really cold has the potential to freeze over and burst the pipe, a problem that no one wants to deal with during the dead of winter. In fact, if you have any other outdoor faucets or water lines, make sure you turn them off and completely clear them before winter starts.
Inspect the Roof
While you’re up cleaning your gutters, you might as well have a look around your roof to inspect it for any damage that may end up biting you in the back down the line. Loose or missing shingles can cause water to leak into your home faster than you would think. This is especially true of regions with heavy snowfall, as the added weight will only exacerbate any existing problems your roof might have.
Seal up Cracks and Openings
There are probably more openings into your home than you realize. Especially around doors and windows, these openings can have a terrible impact on your heating bill and the overall comfort level of your home. Sealing up these cracks and openings with something like caulk will not only keep your house warmer, but it will also lower the amount of work your heater has to do to regulate the temperature in your house. It’s really a win-win situation when it comes to sealing these up.
Insulate Your Attic and Ducts
If you live in an area that feels the intense chill of winter but don’t have an insulated attic or insulation around your ducts, you are losing a lot of potential heat. Insulating your attic is essential because heat, as we know, rises. The less insulation you have near the top of your house, the more heat escapes through the attic without keeping your home warm. Similarly, not insulating your ducts will make it harder for the heat to travel where it needs to be. It also makes your home harder to heat and can drive up your energy bill.
Clean Out the Fireplace
If the weather has been kind, you probably haven’t used your fireplace very much in the past few months. However, before you turn it back on to get that roaring fire going, it’s worth it to clean out any residual soot or ash that could be clogging up your chimney. Not only does this make your fireplace work better, but it also lowers the possibility of potential smoke inhalation and dangerous house fires.
Inspect Your Fire Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
If you’re a new homeowner, you may not necessarily know this. During the winter, when your heat is running all the time, the chances of a fire breaking out or carbon monoxide permeating your home are much higher than in the warmer months. You should already be checking your smoke detector and carbon monoxide detectors regularly, but if you haven’t, now is a good time to start. Don’t get caught unawares when it is such an easy problem to address beforehand.
Trim Your Trees
Your house isn’t the only thing that has to deal with the extra added weight of snow during the winter. Once all the leaves fall, and before the snow does, it’s worth the time it takes to check over the trees near your house for any loose or broken branches. Finding and removing these before the snow comes could save you a lot of money in property damage when those branches fall on top of your house.
Check Your Heating System
We’ve been talking a lot about your home’s heating, which is understandable given how important it is in the winter. We should also mention how crucial it is to let an HVAC professional look over your heating system before winter arrives in full. Nobody wants to deal with the heat going out during the winter, so the sooner you can get someone out to change your filters and inspect your HVAC unit, the better.
Guard Your Home Against Critters
Humans aren’t the only animals that don’t appreciate the cold. Protecting your home from insects and small animals becomes even more important during the winter, as they’ll be looking for anywhere to set up shop away from the chilly air. Make sure to seal up any areas where they could get into your house, and lay down traps for the worst of the offenders.
These home projects to do before winter should be some of the key items on your to-do list. Don’t get stuck out in the cold. With a little forethought, you can be cozy in your home with no problems throughout the winter. If you’re looking to improve your home for many winters to come, Distinctive Metal Roofing’s standing seam metal roofs in Pittsburgh are second to none. They’ll protect you not just during this upcoming winter but for many future winters as well.