Preparing Your Home for WinterAfter checking to make sure that your home’s roof, siding, and windows are all in good shape, there a few other things you should keep in mind. These tips will help you protect your belongings, reduce your heat bill, and stay safe during the winter months.

  1. A programmable thermostat can save you money by setting a schedule that heats your home while you’re in it.
  2. Weather-stripping insulates doors and windows from drafts and allows them to still open and close.
  3. Cover windows with plastic, along with traditional cloth curtains. Whether you chose a DIY method or a commercial product, plastic insulates really well.
  4. Switch fans to rotate clockwise after you turn on your heat. This creates an updraft that will push heated air down into the room, as opposed to letting it rise.
  5. Have your furnace inspected, especially if you didn’t have it done when you bought your home. You wouldn’t want it to break down during the holidays with a house full of guests.
  6. Clean and inspect your chimney and flue system. A buildup of soot or a damaged firebox can cause fire hazards. It can also cause harmful fumes like carbon monoxide to come back into your house. Clean and inspect your chimney before the roasting chestnuts season hits. Side note: Make sure you have and know how to use a fire extinguisher.
  7. Insulate your pipes to avoid freezing. Letting pipes trickle even a little on cold nights prevents them from freezing. Know how to shut valves in case a pipe does burst.
  8. Remove outdoor hoses from spigots and shut off your exterior faucets before freezing temperatures come. If you have an underground sprinkler system, you’ll need to have it emptied.
  9. Store outdoor patio gear or cover with tarps. Learn more about protecting your outdoor pots and plants.
  10. Remove branches that could fall on your home or nearby power lines. Branches can potentially become overloaded with ice and fall, damaging your home – especially if there’s an early freeze when branches have not yet adjusted to winter and are still heavy with leaves and moisture.
  11. Don’t prune plants until late winter. This is better for the life of your plants.
  12. Don’t leave your lawn mower full of regular fuel. Over time, the fuel decomposes in the tank and “varnishes” the carburetor, making it difficult to use. Before winter comes, run your tank low. If there’s still some left, keep the engine running until it’s empty before storing. Another option is to add a stabilizer to your fuel that will prevent decomposition. After you add it, make sure you run the engine to circulate the solution.

Preparation and prevention is the best way to deal with the icy winter months to protect your home. If you have any other questions about preparing your home for winter, All Weather Tite in Marlborough, Massachusetts is here to help with ice and snow dam removal!