How To Keep Your Home Safe and Sound In The Dead of Winter
Depending on where your home is located, winter can be an especially tough time of year. It is at this time that extremely low temperatures, ice, snow, and all of the elements of cold set in. To keep your home as comfortable and safe as possible through this time, there are a number of areas in which you can prepare for the brutality of the coming cold season.
Start Preparations Early
Although it is quite possible to prepare your home for winter as it arrives, it is much better to begin such endeavors before winter is in full swing. Not only will it be easier to find the right supplies and services, but they will also be much cheaper at this time. In addition, physical work will also be much easier when it’s not too cold out. Whenever possible, begin preparation early.
One of the best ways to prepare your home for a safe and comfortable winter is by having the heating system professionally checked before it’s in full use. If repairs are found to be necessary, now is the time to take care of them. If no repairs are needed, then simple, preventive maintenance can be performed on the system so as to assure optimal operation all winter long.
Regardless of home size, age, or quality, adequate insulation is always crucial for seasonal survival. As discussed by Energy.Gov:
“To maintain comfort, the heat lost in the winter must be replaced by your heating system and the heat gained in the summer must be removed by your cooling system. Properly insulating your home will decrease this heat flow by providing an effective resistance to the flow of heat.”
Insulating can mean blocking gaps and cracks around doors and windows. It can mean adding insulation to an attic. It can also involve insulation addition within the walls. All of these methods can be performed by a professional or a well-suited DIY’er.
In winter prep, it’s also very important to prep all exterior plumbing. This can include irrigation systems, hose bibs, exterior valves and lines, hot tubs, and more. Most of these plumbing items are easy to winterize yourself, but can also be professionally addressed via a service call to a local contractor such as First General Service. In most cases, this prep work simply involves draining out any held water so as to prevent freezing.
The final thing that you can do to maximize comfort and safety at home during the winter is to stock supplies in case of emergency or other shortcomings. If your heat system goes down, do you have space heaters or some other alternative, emergency heat source? Do you have enough salt to keep walkways safe and clear outside? Lock-thaw products, wood, propane, and even extra food and water are also frequently stocked for that just-in-case moment.
Winter can certainly be a trying time of year. With the right prep, though, anyone can get through in relative safety and comfort. Following the tips above will give you an excellent start at keeping your home safe and sound during the coldest time of year.
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