Is your home weathering the winter well? At A-Abel, we want our customers to know how to best take care of their homes to avoid unwanted maintenance problems. Here are some winter home maintenance tips that will help your home survive the winter without damage or distress.
1) Seal the Home’s Envelope
Winter weather means increased energy costs as you heat your home. To protect yourself from wasted energy costs, take the time to ensure that your home is properly sealed. Walk around the exterior of your home to look for signs of leaks. Close any crawl space vents located at the home’s foundation. Then, consider re-caulking the interior of your home around windows and adding weather stripping around doors to stop leaks.
2) Change the Furnace Filter
Change your furnace filter at least one time each winter. Check your furnace’s owner’s manual to see how frequently the furnace filter should be changed. A clogged filter can make your furnace work too hard, impacting its efficiency and leading to increased heating bills.
3) Drain the Exterior Spigot
Locate the exterior spigot on your house, which is the spigot you screw the garden hose into. Winter weather can cause the pipes connected to this spigot to burst. Before a cold spell, turn off the water to this outdoor spigot, then drain it to ensure that it has no water left inside.
4) Insulate Your Pipes
Most pipes should be properly insulated within your home, but make sure that any exposed pipes have an extra layer of insulation. Check your basement or crawlspace for exposed pipes that need some additional insulation.
5) Schedule a Furnace Maintenance Check
The last thing you want in the middle of winter is to have your furnace go out. This is the time to schedule a maintenance check and tune-up for your furnace. Your HVAC team will be able to locate efficiency problems and deal with small maintenance concerns before they turn into costly emergency repair needs.
6) Clear Out the Gutters
Finally, make sure your gutters and downspouts are free from debris. If water cannot flow through these as snow and ice on the roof melt, you could experience ice dams, which could lead to costly roof repairs. Prevent this problem altogether by clearing out your gutters and downspouts.