Getting your home ready for a long, cold winter is something each homeowner should put into consideration before the season approaches. These steps, most of which you can perform on your own, will help you to reduce your utility bills and protect your home:
Reverse your ceiling fans
If your ceiling fan happens to have a reverse switch, utilize it to run the blades of the fan in a clockwise direction after you have turned on the heat. The fan will offer an updraft and push down the heated air into the room from the ceiling because hot air usually rises. This is helpful in rooms that have high ceilings, and it might also allow you to turn down your thermostat by a degree or two for better energy savings.
Clear your eaves
This is not a task that is complicated, but it is an imperative job nonetheless. Eavestroughs that are clogged can result in the formation of ice dams, which can loosen shingles, tear off gutters and leave your roof vulnerable to leaks. All you have to do is climb the edge of your roof and dig out the debris carefully. It is not a must that you remove each small stone. The main purpose is to ensure that nothing hinders the flow of water, and that no stagnant water gets left in the gutters.
Prevent ice dams
If your home had a lot of icicles during last winter, or worse, ice dams, which can bring about meltwater to back up and flow into your home, ensure that you take steps to prevent potential damage. Seek the help of a home-energy auditor or weatherization contractor. They will fix the air leaks or inadequate insulation that is experienced in your attic.
Check your roof
If you cannot access your roof or you prefer not to climb to the roof, make use of binoculars to inspect the shingles. Search for missing, damaged or loose shingles that may leak during winter’s storms or from melting snow.
Shut off exterior faucets
Cold winter temperatures can lead to the freezing of your pipes which can burst inside your house and cause major water damage. Ensure that you locate and close any shut-off valves that connect to outside faucets, and drain any excess water that is found inside the lines. It is also advisable to drain any interior pipes in unheated areas of your house like your attic.