A Winter Preparedness Checklist for the Home

A Winter Preparedness Checklist for the Home

If you live in an area that regularly sees below-freezing temps in the winter, use these tips to get your home ready for the oncoming cold season.

This winter, don’t get caught off guard by the cold! Make sure your home is ready to face the changing of the seasons with this winter preparedness checklist. The sooner you start winterizing your home, the more comfortable it will be when the temperatures drop.

Seal Windows and Doors

Check all the window and door frames in your home and inspect the caulk or sealant for signs of wear and tear. Cold air can sneak through even the smallest cracks! If necessary, scrape out and recaulk your windowsills and door frames. Replace any weatherstripping that shows signs of age or poor condition.

Clean Your Chimney

Before you start lighting fires in your fireplace this winter, make sure the resulting smoke has a safe place to escape. Chimneys are susceptible to creosote buildup, and in the off-season, critters from outside tend to fly or fall in. Have your chimney cleaned by a professional every fall, preferably before the first true cold snap of the season. Ensure that the flue is in good working order before you light your first cozy fire.

Winterize the HVAC System

As you turn off your air conditioner for the season, make sure your HVAC system is ready to provide heat to all areas of your home. Before the cold hits, test out your furnace at least three times; you don’t want to be caught off guard by faulty components! If you have an AC condenser unit outside, cover it with a piece of plywood or a trash can lid. This practice prevents snow and sleet from creeping into the unit where it can encourage mold growth.

Test Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Did you know that winter is the deadliest season for carbon monoxide poisoning? Between the use of space heaters, wood fires burning in fireplaces, and closed windows and doors, this deadly gas has ample opportunity to spread in your home.Get into the habit of testing your CO detectors once a month. Replace batteries as they run low. If your detector does signal a monoxide leak, call a professional to help you locate the source and remediate the leak.This winter, make sure your home is a comfortable and safe place to shelter from the cold. This handy winter preparedness checklist will help you identify potential cold-weather hazards in your home and remediate them.

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