Winter is coming…
October is oct-over — in other words, it’s November, and it’s already getting gloomy and colder out. Before it starts getting even colder, there are a few things that homeowners should take care of before getting warm and cozy at home this winter.
Below you’ll find plenty of tips for getting your home ready for winter, as well as a downloadable pdf checklist that you can use!
Check Your Furnace & Furnace Air Filters
Air filters should be replaced regularly to keep your HVAC systems running efficiently. Replacement time can vary between different air filters. However, if you haven’t checked or replaced yours recently, now would be a good time to do so.
We carry some types of furnace air filters here. As a reminder, always use the manufacturer’s recommended size and type filter for your home.
Schedule HVAC Repairs and Replacements
It’s best to get any repairs or replacements taken care of now before it gets too cold out. Scheduling before heating season ensures that a technician can get to you sooner and prevents any outages or unexpected expenses when it’s really cold out.
Don’t forget to change your temperature settings for the cooler seasons! Keeping your thermostat set at 68 degrees is recommended for comfort and energy efficiency. You may also want to consider installing a smart thermostat for the best efficiency.
Winterize Outdoor AC Systems
Clean off the exterior unit and clear it of any debris, leaves, weeds, etc. This will keep leaves and twigs from getting caught up in the unit and causing any damage to it.
Turn the Unit OFF to Prevent Overuse During the Winter Months.
Cover the unit. This is optional, as some manufacturers do not require this as part of regular HVAC maintenance for certain units. Full covers can be purchased, or you can place a piece of plywood over the top to prevent debris, tree limbs, or any other objects from getting inside the unit.
Switch Ceiling Fan Direction
There is a small switch on ceiling fans that can make a big difference in heating costs and efficiency during winter. To change into winter mode, flip the switch and make sure your fan is turning clockwise. This movement creates an updraft, which redistributes the warm air and makes a room feel warmer and more comfortable, as well as reducing heating costs by up to 15%.
Clean Your Gutters
Clean gutters above the unit to prevent water from leaking or dripping into it in case of freezing temperatures this winter. Clogged gutters can cause overflowing that leads to water damage to wood trim around the house, as well as wet basements and crawlspaces.
Turn Off Outside Faucets
Disconnect garden hoses, turn off faucets, and drain outdoor sprinkler systems to prevent these outdoor pipes from freezing and bursting. You can also use insulated covers to protect your outdoor faucets during winter.
Inspect Your Chimney and Fireplace
Using your fireplace during winter makes your home feel so cozy and comfortable, but it is incredibly important to be safe. Make sure your chimneys, vents, and fireplaces are clean before toasting any marshmallows or curling up with a good book this season. A professional chimney inspector or chimney sweep service can make sure you’re good to go this winter.
Inspect Your Roof
The final item on our list is something that should be done twice a year and is very important to do before it starts snowing. Spotting things like missing or damaged shingles, or structural issues like sagging or leaking can prevent bigger emergencies down the road when snow begins piling up.
We hope this checklist helps you prepare for winter and you and your family stay safe and warm this season. Don’t forget to download the free Winter Maintenance Checklist here!