Winter is in full swing, and we've already gotten some pretty chilly nights and even snow this year. Make sure your house is well prepared for the Winter weather. The last thing you want is for something to fail after a hard freeze. These are some tips and ways to winterize your home, so you aren't left in the cold.
Clean your vents and ducts. Vacuum your intake vents to remove any dust. Open them and try to vacuum as much as possible. You should change your air filters every season (four times a year). It will help reduce the build-up and create better airflow. Plus, if you get the odor reducing filter, you'll get rid of any lingering smells in the house.
Clean out the gutters. Now that all of the leaves have fallen, it's time to clean out your gutters so that it's clear for the water or snow to flow freely. We usually do this when the Christmas lights go up! You can use a leaf blower to make it easier.
Clean the chimney. You don't want to start your first fire and find out that there are squirrels or bats living in there. The debris can also cause chimney fires.
Check the furnace. Nothing would be worse than finding out your furnace isn't working the night before the cold front moves in.
Insulate and check for cracks. Check around windows and doors for any cracks that may be letting cold air in. Make sure that any attic or under the house spaces are properly insulated as well. This will help reduce your heating cost because the warmth isn't escaping from these areas.
Reverse the fans. Most fans have a feature that allows them to spin in reverse pushing the warm air that rises back down to recirculate it.
Check your smoke detectors. Make sure batteries are replaced, and everything is working correctly before having your first fire or cookie baking marathon.
Wrap your pipes. If you have a basement or crawl space with water pipes in them, wrap them with pre-molded foam rubber sleeves or fiberglass insulation. A burst water pipe in winter is the worst.