Getting Ready for Winter
With winter just around the corner, it’s time to get ready for the cold weather ahead. We’ve prepared these 5 tips for you to get your house ready for the freezing temperatures. Want to learn more about what you can do for your home? Enter your address above to get started!
1. Check and Clean out Your Gutters
Clean your gutters and downspouts and keep them free of debris. During Autumn, falling leaves and small branches can fill up your gutters, causing both a clog, but also creating a medium for frost, snow and ice to form. If you see water running over the gutter, it is a sure sign of a clog that should be removed immediately. Be sure to position downspouts so that they direct water away from the house. If you’re not comfortable with being on a ladder or going out on your roof, a handyman is usually willing to help.
2. Disconnect Hoses
If you have outdoor water faucets, it’s time to disconnect your hoses and any timers from each faucet. Leaving hoses connected during periods of freezing could lead to burst pipes and faucets as well as ruin your water hose. Don’t forget to remove any sprayers attached to the other end of the hose. If you live in a particularly cold climate you might want to consider installing anti-siphon faucets to reduce the risk of your water line freezing.
3. Blow Out Sprinklers
Underground sprinkler systems should be blown out as soon as the nighttime lows dip into the low 30s. Leaving water in them in freezing conditions can create costly pipe breaks underground, break backflows or burst pipes in the manifold, rendering your system unusable in the Spring, until you can get it repaired. If you want to do this yourself, but don’t have an air compressor, you can usually rent one from a local hardware store. Landscapers and sprinkler installation companies are also available to help you with this.
4. Wrap Pipes
Any exposed exterior pipes and faucets, including your sprinkler manifold, should be wrapped, to protect them from the cold weather. Additionally, if you have exposed interior pipes in unheated crawl spaces or basements, you should consider installing pipe insulation. Exposed pipes are more likely to freeze, causing seam bursts and leaks, which can cause flooding and water damage to your property.
5. Furnace Inspection
Schedule an appointment with your local heating and cooling company to come out, inspect and clean your furnace. Even the smallest bit of dust can cover sensitive components like the flame sensor and cause it to malfunction. Inspecting and cleaning also has an added benefit of helping your furnace to run more efficiently. If you are considering a new furnace, be sure to consider all your options, including a heat pump, which has Federal incentives and discounts to install – your local government might offer some discounts too!C