With cooler weather here, now is the time to prep your home for the upcoming winter season. Winter can bring about challenges to homeowners, including winterizing your home and optimizing energy efficiency. In addition, fall is a great time to perform safety checks on a few important components of your home. Here’s a quick review so your home is ready for winter, before the season kicks off in earnest.
Winterize Your Home’s Exterior
Winterizing is the act of protecting your home from damage or injury that could result from cold, icy conditions. Before a hard freeze hits our area, shut down and drain exterior faucets, hoses, and sprinkler systems to protect your pipes from freezing. Do a quick walkthrough of your exterior landscape, paying close attention to walkways and stairs. These can become treacherous during icy conditions, so make sure both steps and railings are sturdy and solid, and make any repairs as needed. With the shorter days of winter, you are more reliant on your exterior lighting to guide your way inside. Check all exterior light fixtures now to ensure they are in working order and replace bulbs as necessary.
Prep Your Heating System
Your HVAC will work hard for you this winter, so be sure it is prepared. Vacuum vents to allow warm air to pass smoothly, replace your furnace filter on a regular basis, and consider an annual contract with your preferred local HVAC specialist to make sure your system is in top repair. Another way to increase your home’s efficiency? Visit energy.gov and perform an energy home audit! And although you may not use it for a heat source, your fireplace, whether gas or wood burning, should be cleaned and checked as well. With wood burning fireplaces, chimney cleaning should be performed once a year by a licensed professional. When left untreated, your chimney becomes a major fire hazard due to the buildup of creosote, a highly flammable powder.
D-I-Y Safety Checks & More
Simple tasks like checking both your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors and replacing the batteries, checking the expiration date of your fire extinguishers, and providing non-skid mats or rugs at your home’s entry points to minimize snowy weather creeping inside your home are easy to tasks to complete. Other D-I-Y projects can include organizing and preparing for the holiday season – taking an inventory of linens, cookware, and tableware you’ll need, updating contact information for season’s greetings and invitations, and stocking your guest room with extra blankets.
Design and Build Your Dream Home with Columbia Builders!
Columbia Builders is the home builder of choice in Howard County, offering homes in Ellicott City, Elkridge, Laurel, Columbia, Marriottsville, Fulton, Clarksville, Dayton, and Brookeville. No matter what the size and scope of your project, we have the skills, experience, and resources needed to bring your vision to life. We offer a level of customization that is truly unmatched and are committed to using materials and craftsmen of the highest quality, so you can trust that your new home is built to last.
If you’re ready to invest in a home that is built with your needs in mind, trust in us. Give Columbia Builders a call today at 410-730-0215 or use our contact form here. You can also keep up with us on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Houzz, and Youtube, and don’t forget to check back on our blog for more tips and information!