A cold winter can be especially hard on a house. Snow and ice can wreak havoc on your property if not dealt with in a proper manner. A bit of preventative maintenance can ensure that you will not have the problems of frozen pipes, ice dams and other winter woes.
Prevent cold air form getting in.
Cold air flowing into the home can be very costly on your heating bill. Preventing this can be done by checking the weather stripping on the doors and windows. It’s important to check and repair the caulking around windows and doors, outside faucets and air vents, and seal any cracks in foundation walls.
Keep a look out for snow accumulation.
Make an effort to remove snow from areas like air intakes, exhaust vents, the front of your home and the roof. Damaged or missing shingles can lead to water leaks if you leave snow on the roof for extended periods.
Prevent door lock freezing.
This type of prevention can be done by spraying a small amount of lubricant into the lock once a season. Frozen door locks can prevent you from entering your home.
Remove window screens.
Removing screens from windows can boost natural light and improve solar heat gain. During winter storms, snow can also get trapped between the screen and window, potentially causing damage to window frames and sills.
Keep an eye on trees.
Big snowfalls can settle onto branches, making them heavy and more prone to breaking, which can be especially dangerous if a tree is within reach of your house. Ease the burden on your trees by brushing off snow after each snowfall, using a broom to extend your reach. Don’t shake the tree to remove snow, since this can cause brittle limbs to break. Proper tree maintenance in the fall, paired with regular snow removal, should help prevent breakage, but if a limb does fall during winter, have it removed as soon as weather permits.
Prevent frozen pipes.
Insulate the pipes by the windows, doors and unheated parts of the home. Turn off exterior faucets as any water in the pipes can freeze and cause the pipes to burst as the ice expands. If your pipes are prone to freezing, then leave the faucet dripping ever so slightly.
Regularly check the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
In winter, we typically keep the windows shut and use wood stoves and fireplaces more often. Ensure that you have smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of the house and that they are working properly.
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