1. Inspect and replace window seals to prevent drafts.
Window seals are important in keeping cold air out, and warmth in. This is especially important during winter months when energy bills can skyrocket if you're not careful. If you notice any gaps or cracks around your windows, it's best to inspect them for damage and replace the seals as soon as possible.
2. Check your HVAC system for any necessary repairs or maintenance.
A well-maintained HVAC system is essential to keeping your home warm and comfortable during winter months. Make sure to service the unit at least once a year, and check it regularly for any signs of damage or wear-and-tear.
3. Clean and inspect the fireplace, including the chimney, for cracks or damage.
Before using your fireplace in winter, make sure you clean out the flue and check for any cracks or other damages that could cause smoke to enter your home rather than escape through the chimney. If there are noticeable issues with the flue, have it professionally inspected and repaired before using the fireplace.
4. Change air filters in heating systems to promote efficient airflow.
Dirty air filters can cause your HVAC system to work much harder than necessary, which can lead to a drastic spike in energy use and costs. To keep this from happening, change the air filters every one to two months – depending on how often you use the furnace –to ensure a steady flow of clean, filtered air throughout your home.
5. Drain water from outdoor faucets and turn off their supply valves if weather permits outdoors plumbing repair work.
As temperatures dip below freezing, it’s important to make sure that any water left in outdoor faucets is completely drained before turning off the supply valves. This will help prevent any damage or costly repairs that may be caused by freezing temperatures.
6. Inspect exterior door frames for gaps where cold air could enter.
Gaps between the frame and door can allow cold air to enter your home, so check them regularly for cracks or other damages. If you find any, seal them up with weatherstripping or caulk to keep the warm air in and the cold out.
7. Insulate exposed pipes that run through unheated portions of the home such as attics, garages, and crawlspaces.
Pipes that are exposed to colder temperatures are more likely to freeze and burst during winter months – leading to expensive repair costs. To avoid this, insulate any exposed pipes with foam pipe insulation to keep them warm and protected throughout the season.
8. Ensure gutters are clean of debris and securely attached to the roofline.
Any debris or build-up in your gutters can cause water to back up and leak into your home's walls, leading to costly damages. It’s important that you clean out your gutters regularly and ensure they're securely connected to the roof line for optimal protection against moisture damage.
9. Check downspouts are directed away from foundation walls.
Downspouts should always be directed away from your home’s foundation walls – if not, it can lead to basement flooding or other water damage. Make sure to check your downspouts often and adjust them if necessary so they are pointing away from the foundation.
10. Remove leaves, brush piles, etc around foundation walls to discourage pests from entering.
Leaves, brush piles and other debris can provide a cozy nesting spot for insects and rodents during winter months. To avoid this, be sure to remove any leaves or debris around your home’s foundation walls, as well as seal up any gaps or cracks that may allow pests access into the home.
11. Install door sweeps on exterior doors to help prevent drafts.
Door sweeps are an effective way of preventing cold drafts from entering through the bottom of your doors. They fit snugly against the threshold of the door and create a tight seal that helps maintain warm air inside while keeping out cold air from outside. Make sure to check them periodically for wear-and-tear throughout the season and replace if necessary.
12. Replace leaky windows with energy-efficient models to reduce heat loss.
Leaky windows can cause a significant amount of heat loss in winter months, making it harder for your heating system to keep up and resulting in higher energy bills. To prevent this, replace any older or drafty windows with more energy-efficient models that will help keep the warm air inside and hold out cold air from outside.
13. Review your homeowners insurance policy to ensure adequate coverage in case of extreme weather conditions or other unexpected events.
With winter comes a greater risk of extreme weather conditions and other unexpected events that could cause damage to your home. It’s important to review your homeowners insurance policy to make sure it will provide adequate coverage should you experience any such occurrences.