Here are some winter tips to make your home cozy, warm & protected.
Here are some important things that should be on your to-do list, to get your property ready for winter.
Clean gutters. If you can’t get on a ladder yourself, hire someone. Wait until all the leaves are down, then do it once (unless, of course, they’re already overflowing when it rains). So many water-in-the-basement problems are because of clogged gutters.
Get water away from the house. Same as above. Even if your gutters are clean, rainwater may be pouring down the leader pipes and emptying right at the corner of your house (and into the basement). You may need to hire someone to dig trenches and install underground drain pipes to pull roof water away from the house. Make sure that all landscaping is pitched away from the house.
Seal up masonry. Repair any broken joints or cracks in walkways, steps and stonework. Make sure you have clear, shovel-friendly paths to all doors.
Cut down on heating costs. Make your house more energy-efficient by adding insulation, caulking around windows and doors and new storm windows.
Hire a chimney sweep. If you haven’t had your chimneys cleaned in a while, it’s probably time. How often should you have your chimneys cleaned?
If you have 40 to 50 fires a winter, or about three times a week, you should clean it every year.
If it’s a couple of times a week, every other year is fine.
Only on Sunday? Then every third year will do.
Chimneys should be cleaned or inspected on an annual basis.
Get your furnace and boiler inspected. Instead of begging for service when your boiler blows on a dead-cold January night, sign a contract now with a reputable heating company. Many oil and propane suppliers are happy to bring you on board with an annual service contract. It’s worth it.