Clean your gutters.
Your gutters catch a lot more than just rain and snow, but that’s not always a good thing. As fall reaches its end, make sure to inspect them and completely clean out any leaves and debris. Water and snow can back up in clogged drains, where they can freeze and seep into your home, causing damage. While you’re at it, ensure your downspouts are carrying water away from your foundation.
Check for leaks.
Do you find that your home is drafty? Cold air finding its way in can drastically increase how much you spend on heating. Here’s how to find those pesky leaks: on a windy day, light a stick of incense and walk around your home, paying special attention to recessed lighting, window and door frames and electrical outlets. If the delicate smoke stream starts to waver, you’ve found a leak to fix. To block the leak, you can buy door sweeps to close spaces under the exterior doors, or apply tacky rope to block drafty spots.
If you don’t know what a furnace filter is (not uncommon for those renting their homes), we suggest you check yours now. An old, dirty filter can affect air flow, reduce the efficiency of your furnace and – in extreme cases – could potentially start fires! It’s always suggested to have furnaces cleaned and tuned annually by a professional inspector.
Protect your pipes.
Look around your home where it is not heated and where pipes may run through such as crawlspaces, basements or garages. Wrap the pipes with pre-molded foam rubber sleeves or fiberglass insulation. This will reduce the likelihood of your pipes freezing in the winter and bursting.
Test your fire and carbon monoxide alarms.
It’s easy to forget but check to ensure that both alarms are operating and frequently change the batteries in both. Test them to make sure they still work.
Spending some time and money on these simple tips can really help keep the warm air in and the cold air out. Do you have any other tips to share? We’d love to hear from you! Leave us a message in the comments section below.
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