Weatherproof Your New Home for Winter

After a hot summer, cooler temps, cozy sweaters, and evenings nestled up by the fire are calling your name. Weatherproof your home this fall so you can enjoy the delights of winter.
Not only will being proactive help you avoid hassles in the dead of winter, but it will also protect your investment and save you money. Take these steps to winterproof your home.

Insulate the attic and basement 

Insulating your attic and basement is one of the easiest things you can do to keep heating (and cooling) costs down.
If you have a crawl space, consider sealing it, too. You can simply look around for gaps in your insulation and make the patches yourself. Or you can hire an HVAC professional to do a thorough evaluation, remedy any issues, and provide other recommendations.
A well-insulated home can save you hundreds during the winter season alone. 

Examine your pipes 

Frozen pipes are one of the top causes of property damage to homes during the winter.
To avoid frozen pipes, check the location and condition of your home’s pipes and take action if you spot some problem areas.

How to protect your pipes

  • Seal openings where cold air can reach unprotected pipes.
  • Add insulation around pipes.
  • Allow faucets to drip during freezing weather to keep water flowing.
  • Store your outdoor hoses and shut off outdoor water valves.

Perform routine maintenance 

When you move into a new home, it's great to adopt regular home maintenance habits.
Create a checklist and tackle it every spring and fall. While it may seem like a drag, being proactive will help you avoid catastrophic damages and costs.
Here are some ideas to get you started. 

Fall maintenance checklist

  • Clean your gutters. 
  • Trim trees away from the house. 
  • Caulk or apply weather stripping to gaps around doors and windows. 
  • Inspect your roof—look for missing shingles, small holes, and soft spots. 
  • Check for small cracks and holes in the foundation and fill them with caulk, particularly where the masonry meets siding and where pipes or wires enter the home. 
  • Make sure your fireplace is working and the flue is free of obstructions; have the fireplace cleaned every other year by a licensed chimney sweep.  
  • Test smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Schedule an HVAC inspection once a year. 
  • Replace air filters and clean ducts. 
  • Make sure you have a shovel or snowblower to clear the drive and sidewalks.