1. Inspect windows and seal any cracks or gaps.
Windows can be inspected by looking for cracks, leaks, and air infiltration. If any are found, they should be fixed as soon as possible to prevent heat loss and energy waste. Sealing cracks and gaps with caulk or weatherstripping is an easy way to improve the window's efficiency.
2. Check the insulation in the attic and basement.
Insulation helps keep a house warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It's important to check the insulation in your attic and basement to make sure it is adequate for the weather conditions. Adding more insulation if needed can help improve your home's energy efficiency.
3. Install storm windows or plastic sheeting over windows.
Installing storm windows or plastic sheeting over windows is a great way to keep out the cold air and save on heating costs. Storm windows are typically made of plastic or glass and installed over the existing window frames. Plastic sheeting can be used as an alternative to storm windows, but it must be taped or glued securely to the window frame to prevent air infiltration.
4. Clean gutters and downspouts of leaves and debris.
Gutters and downspouts should be cleaned regularly to prevent them from becoming clogged and overflowing. Clogged gutters can lead to water damage to the roof and eaves of a house. Debris such as leaves, twigs, and branches can accumulate in gutters and downspouts, so they should be cleared away at least once a season.
5. Repair roof shingles, flashings, and vents.
Roof repairs such as replacing missing or damaged shingles, repairing flashings, and fixing vents are important tasks that should be done every year. If roof repairs are not done regularly, they can lead to water infiltration and damage to the roof structure.
6. Cover water pipes with insulation or heat tape.
Water pipes that run through unheated areas of a house such as an attic or basement should be wrapped in insulation or heat tape to prevent them from freezing during cold weather conditions. Freezing water pipes can lead to costly repairs so it's important to take precautions against freezing temperatures.
7. Drain outdoor hoses and store them indoors.
Outdoor hoses can be drained by turning off the water supply at the faucet and opening all spigots until all the water has drained out. Once they are drained, they should be stored indoors to prevent them from freezing and cracking.
8. Change air filters in the heating system.
Changing the air filter in your heating system is an important part of winterizing your home. A dirty air filter can restrict airflow and cause your heating system to work harder, leading to higher energy bills. replacing the air filter with a clean one can help improve the efficiency of your heating system.
9. Add weather stripping around doors and door frames.
Weather stripping is a simple and effective way to seal doors and windows against drafts. It can be applied around door frames and window frames to create an airtight seal that prevents cold air from coming into the house. Weather stripping is available in a variety of materials such as foam, vinyl, and rubber.