Today is the first official day of Winter. Here in the Willamette Valley that means a significant amount of rain, shorter days, colder temperatures, and possibly some snow and ice. When Spring arrives, many homeowner’s immediately think to do “spring cleaning” but winter is another time of year that performing some routine maintenance can help preserve one of your biggest investments and keep your home comfy and cozy. Below are a few things you may want to consider.
- Have your furnace inspected by a professional. Proper furnace maintenance prolongs the life of your unit and will insure its efficiency and efficacy.
- Change the air filters in your furnace and clean the air registers and ductwork using a vacuum with a brush attachment.
- Have your fireplaces and chimneys professionally cleaned and inspected.
- Have your roof inspected for any needed repairs. Apply moss treatment to prevent future damage.
- Keep cold air and insects out by inspecting the caulking around exterior doors and windows. Reapply caulk as needed.
- Inspect the weather stripping around your doors and windows. Repair if damaged and/or install if needed. Here is a helpful link from Energy.gov.
- Test all the smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in your home. Change batteries if needed and replace any broken devices.
- Disconnect all exterior garden hoses from the spigot and cover the spigot with a cold-weather faucet cover. Inexpensive ones like this can be found at Jerry’s and Bi-Mart.
- Clean all debris from gutters and down spouts. Test to make sure that water is flowing freely. Gutters that aren’t working properly can cause roof, siding and wood-trim damage or other expensive problems.
- Make sure all rainwater is flowing away from your house. If water is collecting near the downspouts, installing a water diverter that is appropriate for your property can help. If you are still having water issues, contact a landscape professional. Unresolved water issues can cause foundation problems and other property damage.
- Finally, inspect your crawlspace, attic, and basement for signs of uninvited guests. While rodents can be a problem year-round, they really like to make themselves at home during the cold winter months. Make sure that all possible entrances such as crawlspace and attic vents are adequately affixed, seal up cracks, and make sure the seal on your garage door is functioning properly.
Do you have other winter home maintenance tips? Leave them in the comments.