October means that autumn is in full swing! Pumpkins (and pumpkin spice) everywhere, the leaves are turning magnificent colours and falling from the trees, and kids everywhere are back in school and preparing for Halloween. It’s a glorious time of year, but it’s also a time when homeowners everywhere have to prepare for the big transition to sub-zero weather and winterize their homes. Here are some helpful tips:
Start with the yard
The first step in winterizing your home is to start with the outside and work your way in. The outside of your home has a lot to winterize! First, look at all your hoses. Turn off the water from the outside tap, detach the hose and train the water from both ends. If you have a garage, it’s a good idea to hang them in there for the winter, as residual water left in a hose can cause it to freeze, expand and pop. Remember to turn the water supply to the outside of the house off as well.
Next, deal with your patio furniture. You can tarp it off, move it to a shed, or if you have space, move it to a garage. Leaving it outside uncovered all winter can lead to rust for metal furniture or rotting for wood. If you have a gazebo, it works great to cover furniture, but don’t forget to cover the gazebo as well!
If you have an external air conditioner, check with the manufacturer or your local heating company for how to best winterize while it’s not in use.
Lastly, make sure you check your windows for any issues. Windows with cracked seals or cracks in the actual window (yikes!) can cause drafts in your home, and severely escalated heating bills. Installing thermal windows can save a lot of money in the long run.
Check the Basement
If you have a basement in your home, make sure to do a full winterization. Change the filter in your furnace before the start of winter to ensure optimal heating when it’s cold out without putting your heating bill through the roof. You also want to make sure you have adequate insulation to at least the frost line (or below) to make sure that your home is comfortable all winter.
Get Outside Help
Part of winterizing your home is keeping things running smoothly even when you’re not at home. This can including getting monitored elements to your home. Every home needs to have a smoke and CO detector, which can save a life in case of an emergency. Having a monitored smoke detector means that in case of a fire, the fire department will be sent right to your door, whether or not you are there to make the call. In the case of carbon monoxide, emergency medical services can be dispatched if the CO levels in the home are escalated.
Aside from life safety, you can also add monitored flood detectors in your home, which means that in case of flooding, you will be notified immediately. This is especially a big problem in winter when pipes can freeze and break. You can also add a thermostat to keep the home’s temperature in check. Imagine being able to lower your home’s temperature when you’re away and then raise your home’s temperature when you’re on your way back to save money on heating, right from your smartphone!
Winter is also a prime time for home break ins, so having a home security system can help protect your home and your family might be the most important way to winterize your home.
For more information on how we can help winterize your home and keep it safe this winter, call 866 282 3331 today!