It’s November. Can you believe it? In just a few short weeks, we usher in a brand new year. Even less time before the cold weather strikes our Jersey Shore homes. That means that you need to start preparing your home for winter right now. Which areas deserve your attention the most? Read on to find out.
Preparing Your Home for Winter
Water left standing in your home’s pipes during the winter runs the risk of freezing. When water freezes, it expands. If this happens inside your pipes, it can cause the pipes to burst. And that’s an expensive problem to have, especially in the winter. One of the first steps in preparing your home for winter should be to either insulate your pipes or completely shut off the water for the season if your Jersey Shore home happens to be a rental property. Before shutting off the water, make sure there isn’t any water left in the pipes to keep it from freezing. How do you know if your pipes need to be insulated? Touch them. If you feel heat coming from the pipe, then you know you need to add insulation around it. Don’t forget to check for any pipes that may be exposed to the elements underneath your house as well.
Air Conditioning Unit
Air conditioning units exposed to the elements need to be protected as well. Add this to your list of tasks you need to perform when preparing your home for winter. Drain the entire unit of any water left inside. That includes all hoses and pipes attached. You won’t be using your air conditioning during the cold winter months, so you might want to add a protective cover. You can find these at any home improvement store or online. Does your Jersey Shore home utilize window units for air conditioning? Remove them from the windows and store them away.
Doors and Windows
Next up on your list of chores you need to complete when preparing your home for winter is to check the doors and windows for drafts. Check the sealant, caulking, and weatherstripping all around your windows and doors. Replace anything you see that is dried, cracked or peeling. If it’s in your budget, consider adding storm doors and windows to your property. They increase your curb appeal and save you money by keeping the warm air inside during the wintertime.
When temperatures begin to drop, we turn to our fireplaces for warmth. Make sure the chimney is clean and clear of any debris or creosote (soot) build-up. Creosote is extremely flammable. Your family’s safety is worth a whole lot more than the cost of hiring a professional to come out and clean your chimney.
‘Tis the season for sprinkler blow-outs. Yet another important chore to check off your list when preparing your home for winter is to have your sprinkler system blown out. This prevents the pipes from freezing up during the cold winter months when they aren’t in use. There are ways to blow out your sprinklers yourself. But, for just a few dollars, you can hire a pro to handle it instead.
In the summer, your ceiling fan blades are set so that they run counterclockwise. This draws pushes cool air down to the floor. Since warm air rises, reversing the blades to a clockwise rotation pushes the warm air back down towards the floor. This helps maintain a warmer atmosphere in your home without having to raise the thermostat higher, saving you money and energy.
Finally, when preparing your home for the winter, check your insulation. Proper insulation keeps warm air from leaking out of your Jersey Shore home and shuts out the cold exterior temperatures. Then, you don’t have to constantly blast your heater all winter long. In turn, you save money on heating costs. The attic and basement are the biggest culprits for heat loss. Check that these are well insulated before winter storms carry bitter temperatures into your home.