There are several things you can do during the later months of summer and autumn to ensure your house can stand up to even the harshest of winters. The changes will ensure your home stays safe and comfortable all winter long and many of the changes will increase the efficiency of your home so you can save money on energy during the colder months. Here are a few ways in which you can get your home ready for winter.
Check your fireplace, wood-burning stove or pellet stove
Be sure your fireplace, wood-burning stove or pellet stove is clean and in good repair. These alternative sources of heating can save you a bundle on heating costs over the winter. They also help you control the heat in your home and focus on the rooms used most by your family. The ambiance of space is improved with a roaring fire, so if you are not looking forward to the coming snow and bitter cold, you can take comfort in the cosy feel of a fire.
Add insulation such as cavity wall insulation
Another way to make your home more comfortable and save on energy costs is to add insulation with on example being cavity wall insulation. The cost of cavity wall insulation can vary depending on the size of your home but luckily you can get grants to help towards the cost of this type of insulation. This will keep the warm air in your home and the cold air outside. Even if you have updated the insulation in recent years, you should check to make sure there are no drafts in your home and seal up any cracks or openings. You can check for drafts by using a burning stick of incense. Hold it near wall joints, doorways and windows, and if you see the billowing smoke change direction, you know you have a crack that needs to be sealed.
Check your supplies and stock up
Before the dead of winter sets in, check your supplies and stock up if needed. Instead of waiting for a rush on the hardware store for things like rock salt and shovels, shop before those items are needed. You can store the supplies in the garage until they are needed. The items may also be cheaper early in the season, but even if you have to pay full price, at least you will have everything you need when the bad weather arrives.
Turn off the exterior water
Finally, be sure you turn off the exterior water in your home. During the summer months, you use outside water sources for the garden, the watering can, or washing down the patio. When the temperatures begin to drop, you will need to make sure the water flow is stopped so you can avoid freezing. The water pipes in your home are insulated from freezing, but the exterior pipes do not have this benefit. By turning the water off, you are preventing a flooding disaster because no water will be in the pipe to be affected by the bitter cold temperatures. This only takes a few seconds to handle, but it can save you thousands of dollars in damage and plenty of unnecessary winter headaches. This is another vital way to get your home ready for winter.
What are your favorite tips for getting your home ready for winter?
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