We are nearing the time where you will start hearing a lot more about winterization and preparing your home for the cold months ahead. You may be wondering whether winterization really helps you get your home ready for the winter months. You might also wonder when the best time for winterization is. If you find yourself asking these questions the answers are simple, not only should you winterize your home but you should do it well before the cold weather comes.
Winterizing your home can be a big job, so it is important to understand how different winterization tasks will provide the most benefit to you. The more you understand the process the better you will be at choosing the right benefit to you.
When to Winterize
Winterization should start once the temperatures start to fall and nights start getting a lot cooler. In many areas this is typically in late October, early November, but depending on where you live, it may be even earlier than that. Some people think the timing is about doing it before the cold weather takes you by surprise but truly there are more practical reasons than that.
Winterization involves a number of home maintenance items and repair activities, some involving adhesives, sealants and other materials that need time to dry and cure. The colder it is, the longer it could take for these items to set up properly. In some cases, they might even incur shrinkage or fail to set up at all if the temperature is too cold for too long. Starting the process early enough ensures that you have enough time to get everything done before temperatures drop into the trouble zone.
How to Winterize Your Home
Winterization can be broken down into three general types of activities. These general groups are inspection, repair and prevention. The specifics of these activities will depend on where you live and how your home is laid out but here are some basic tips:
- Inspection activities involve checking to see how barriers and equipment are holding up to make sure they are ready for winter. Examples of this might include checking your roof for signs of damage, checking for drafts or other signs of window leaks or damage, and having your furnace or heat pump inspected that its clean and working properly.
- Repair activities involve fixing damage and checking items off your to-do list to prevent things like drafts or unwanted animals and insects from getting into your home. Examples may include fixing your siding, replacing damaged shingles, or getting repairs done to your HVAC system.
- Prevention activities are tasks that help you to preemptively take action so that potential winter problems never come to pass. Examples include covering pipes with insulation to prevent freezing, taking window unit air conditioners out of your windows to prevent heat loss, installing thermal film over window interiors, and disconnecting hoses from outdoor faucets before installing faucet covers to prevent leaks and freezing.
It can be a big job to cover all of your winterization tasks, but each one that you complete can help you avoid problems and even save some money over the course of the winter. Many winterization tasks are common DIY activities though some may require the help of a professional to be completed.
It is common for homeowners to bring in professionals to help with some of their winterization activities. This can include roof or HVAC inspections, calling a plumber to inspect the pipes under the home and make sure they’re insulated or installers to replace old drafty windows with new ones. If you are in need of any type of contractor, please give us a call. We want to be your real estate resource for life.