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Winter Prep: Four Things You Forgot You Have To Do Before It Gets Cold

Prepping the house and lawn for winter entails a wide variety of preparations, some of which you might not remember. You may think to reverse the blade direction on ceiling fans, have the furnace checked out, ignite your pilot light, and ensure sensitive plants are taken care of before temperatures drop to freezing or below. But then you might forget about some or all of the four things below.
Don’t get caught unprepared for winter. Here are four things that can help.

Insulate The Garage Door

Whether your garage is attached or freestanding, insulating the garage door can prevent a dead battery when you attempt to start the car. Insulation kits are available at DIY stores or online. Stored items will suffer less damage, food freezers operate more efficiently when temperatures do not fluctuate into the extreme. Water heaters do not have to compensate for the colder temperatures and pipes inside the garage are far less likely to freeze.

Downspouts And Gutters

Putting off cleaning the gutters and downspouts all summer has allowed leaves and other debris to pile up. Water from melting snow can freeze, creating a dangerous situation. Thoroughly clean the gutters and drain spout, using a plumber’s snake if necessary. In areas with snow and ice, install gutter-heating cables to prevent dangerous buildups. Ensure anti-ice dam devices are installed to prevent heavy chunks of ice from hitting anyone passing by.

The Air Conditioner Needs Winter Care Too

Often neglected during the winter months, the air conditioner needs regular maintenance. An expert in air conditioning in Fort Myers said that for homes with outside condensing units, turn the unit off and clear out any debris. Check for worn belts, wires or hoses; if any are present, have them replaced immediately. Straighten any bent fins with a fin comb. Cover the unit with a breathable, waterproof fabric made for condensing units. Window units should be brought inside, cleaned, serviced and stored. If they cannot be removed, they should be cleaned, serviced and covered.

Have The Roof Inspected

Taking care of the roof before winter hits can prevent damage or disaster. Have cracked or missing shingles, defective flashing or other issues taken care of before the weather turns. Moisture can infiltrate the smallest of cracks, allowing mold, fungus or rot to spread. Ensure the attic has proper insulation and ventilation to allow moist air to escape.

By taking care of these four often-neglected items, your home will be safe, warm and cozy this winter. You may also enjoy lower utility bills and fewer if any emergency repairs. Enjoy winter activities without the stress or frustration of worrying about your house. Your to-do list this spring may be shorter as a result, also.

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