5 Tips to Prepare Your Home for Winter

January 28, 2019 by in Owner/Builder Tips

A warm cozy home with an affordable heating bill in the
winter is what we all long for.  Here are
a few simple steps to take to make sure your home is prepared for the winter
months to lower your utility bills, protect your investment and keep
your family safe.

1. Furnace Tune-up
An HVAC system inspection can find blocked vents, a cracked heat exchanger, or
dirty burners, which are known to cause health issues such as carbon monoxide
leaks. During the inspection, the furnace will be cleaned to ensure it continues
to run smoothly. When there is a build-up present, the system will
work harder costing you more on your utility bills. According to Mike Lies with
Compass Real Estate in Littleton
, regular furnace upkeep will ensure
your system is safe, efficient, and ready for new owners when you decide to

2. Chimney Clean
A fireplace and chimney cleaning will remove the dirt, dust, soot, and pet hair
can build up in your fireplace and chimney all year long which can lead to
seasonal allergies. Creosote also builds up in your chimney over time and can
cause corrosion making your chimney unstable and hazardous. A reputable
chimney company will also inspect for chimney liner cracks, gas line
leaks, and other fire hazards.  When not
in use, close the fireplace damper to prevent the warm air from escaping.

3. Check Siding, Window, and Door Frames
Cold air sneaks through gaps, cracks, and drive up your fuel costs, so caulk
should be applied in all gaps bigger than the width of a nickel. Silicone caulk
is best for exterior use because it won’t shrink and will stand up to the
elements. It is common for these gaps to form between siding and windows
frames.  Add weather-stripping around
doors, making sure you cannot see any daylight from inside your home.


Man on ladder caulking outside window

4. Yard Maintenance 
Sprinkler system winterization is the most crucial part of irrigation maintenance.  Most sprinkler repairs are the result of improper winterization. A professional irrigation contractor can perform a sprinkler blowout and assess your system to determine if any major repairs are necessary. If you are in the Foothills or living in a townhome, you might not need your sprinklers winterized, but don’t forget to disconnect your garden hose and drain the water from pipes that lead to outdoor faucets.  Extensions should be added to downspouts to divert water away from the foundation.  In addition, clean gutters of any debris to allow for property water flow.

5. Attic Insulation

Insulating an attic can be moderately difficult and is not cheap, but you will see the return on your heating bill.  Typically, homes in warm weather states should have an R-38 insultation in the attic, while homes in colder climates should have R-49.  The insulation helps keep warm air inside during the cold winter months. Also, seal off any cutouts in the drywall from electrical fixtures, fans, and outlets.  Use caulk to fill smaller gaps and expanding foam for larger openings.

In addition, make
sure you are prepared for emergencies or power outages by having essentials
such as a flashlight, first-aid kit, blankets, water, and non-perishable food
readily available. These simple steps will help protect your investment and
keep your family comfortable and safe. 

Find more handy tips at:

Submitted by: Mike Lies owner of Gold Compass Real Estate in Littleton, CO. 

You can contact him or his office manager at the link below!

Picture of Mike Lies

Mike Lies

When I am not helping clients in their real estate ventures, you will find me biking, snowboarding, rock climbing and participating in miniature war gaming.

(Source: https://coloradohomeblog.com/meet-the-team/)

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