Winter Is Coming: How to Prepare Your House for the Cold Season

The winter season is hard on our homes: from roof tiles lost to storms to snow damage and frozen pipes, there’s an awful lot that can go wrong with our properties in the colder months. You can learn about the best way to stay healthy in extreme weather conditions, on this website: http://www.groliehome.com

Rather than waiting for disaster to strike, taking action before winter sets in could reduce the risk of damage to your home and the possibility of receiving a nasty bill right before Christmas. Here are the key steps to take:

Consider Taking Out a Home Warranty

Before getting into details of the practical steps you can take to protect your home, let’s first discuss the importance of taking out a home warranty. This policy will typically cover all of your property’s major systems and appliances, such as the heating, ductwork, electrics, and plumbing, plus items such as your oven and stand-alone freezer. You can expect all the things covered by the warranty to either be replaced or repaired in case of a breakdown or other catastrophe.

Most home warranty companies will also give you the facility to pay an additional premium to extend your coverage to other items not covered on a standard policy, such as water softeners and trash compactors.

Get Gutter Cleaning

Your gutters and downpipes are crucial to effectively take water away from your property, preventing it from undermining foundations or permeating walls, causing dampness, mold, and all sorts of other problems.

Before the extra rain and storms of winter hit, it’s important to get your gutters cleared of debris. You can either do this yourself (with care!) or employ a professional to undertake the task for you.

Inspect the Roof

Checking your home’s roof for missing tiles (or other issues) means you can get these replaced before winter and avoid the sort of leaks that could cause severe problems, such as structural damage to your property.

This job, like gutter cleaning, may be hazardous, so if you don’t have the appropriate equipment or aren’t confident about undertaking it, it’s a task best left to a professional.

Sweep the Chimney

Getting your chimney regularly swept will not only ensure your fire works more efficiently but will also mean less soot settling on every surface of your home!

Before the cold weather rolls in and you start thinking it might be time to light the fire, get it swept so it’s ready to use when needed. Crucially, part of sweeping chimneys is removing any blockages, which could otherwise impact ventilation and even create chimney fires or result in deadly carbon monoxide entering your home.

Prevent Pipes Freezing

Frozen pipes are a winter nightmare and, if a flood results, can become a costly and time-consuming headache.

Luckily, there are a few steps you can take now to lessen the risk significantly. Firstly, keeping your water heater set at a minimum of sixty-eight degrees Fahrenheit will help. Secondly, insulate high-risk pipes, which are located in unheated areas of your property, such as the basement or garage. You can hire a professional to add insulation to pipes or do the job yourself – it’s a quick and easy task, and insulating material is widely available from most DIY stores.

Spruce up the Garden

If you have trees or large shrubs growing close to your property, these could constitute a risk come winter. High winds, storm conditions, and snow weight could cause boughs or large plant sections to break off and damage your walls, windows, or guttering.

Getting overhanging branches cut back in good time for winter is an important way of protecting your home as the cozy season approaches.

Check for Cracks

Before fall ends, walk slowly around the outside of your house, looking for cracks or signs of subsidence. Getting small cracks repaired before winter strikes will save you the hassle of dealing with the damage water, snow, and ice permeation could wreak on your walls by spring. Check internal walls, too, for cracks; those that have appeared close to windows and doors could indicate water finding its way inside.

Get a professional on board to complete this task, and seek advice immediately if you suspect any subsidence has occurred.

Sort Outside Spaces

Taking some time to have a good sort out of your property’s outside spaces is essential, too, before winter hits. Move recycling and other bins into a shed or garage, and arrange to have any damaged or weak sections of fencing fixed.

Be sure to secure any outdoor furniture or other heavy items to prevent them from causing damage (and being damaged!) in gales.

Safety First

Before winter is a great time to test all your fire and carbon monoxide alarms and get your boiler serviced, a faulty boiler not only constitutes a major health hazard, but even lesser issues mean that it’s unlikely to be running efficiently.

Be sure to schedule a boiler service yearly and contact a professional immediately if there’s a problem in the meantime.

So there you go, some of the key things to consider or do to get your property winter-ready, so you can enjoy the season knowing that your home is protected and happy!

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