Don't Worry This Winter: How To Prep Your Home For Cold Weather

Ready or not, winter is coming. For homeowners, this means it’s time to get busy making sure your home is winter-ready so you and your family can remain safe and warm through the harshest, bitterest cold a Midwest winter has to offer. You’ll be glad you started with this checklist as it allows you to rest easier knowing that you, your family, and your home are fully prepared.

  • Check your roof.

  • Clear out the gutters and downspouts.

  • Protect pipes from freezing.

  • Clean your chimney and fireplace.

  • Inspect and weatherize your windows.

Below you’ll learn a little more about each and why they are so crucial to take care of before winter weather truly sets in.

  • Check your roof: Winter weather can be a challenge in the best of times. If your roof has seen better days or is past its prime, it can lead to leaks, ice dams, moisture problems, and colder than necessary temperatures inside your home. A roof inspection prior to winter allows you to correct and repair small problems before they become much larger issues for your home.

  • Clear out the gutters and downspouts: You might not think it’s such a big deal at first glance, but debris, leaves, twigs, etc. in your gutters and downspouts trap water that turns into ice and can damage your home as a result. They also become fodder for ice damming and other winter-weather-related problems that are costly to repair.

  • Protect pipes from freezing: Frozen pipes can quickly become huge problems for homeowners. It isn’t only the cost of repairing the frozen pipes, but also the wasted water, water damage to the structure of your home, mold and mildew risks, and the disruption of having no water until the problem is solved. In winter months when hot water is in high demand, this can be an even larger problem. Use insulated wraps for pipes exposed to winter weather outside your home and take preventative action inside your home when the temperatures dip extremely low to protect your pipes.

  • Clean your chimney and fireplace: Fireplace and chimney fires account for more than 22,000 fires each year, according to the Chimney Safety Institute of America. Unfortunately, many of these fires result in the loss of life. The sad truth is that they are often preventable with an annual inspection and cleaning of your fireplace and chimney.

  • Inspect and weatherize your windows: If comfort and warmth are the names of the games in your household this winter, you don’t want to overlook the importance of weatherized windows. For some homeowners, it’s as simple as installing plastic sheeting on the inside of windows and weatherstripping to prevent wind from coming in. In other homes, it also involves switching to heavy drapes that block drafts.

These tips will go a long way toward protecting the safety of your home and family as well as the comfort levels inside. It is much better to take care of these chores before the worst of winter weather sets in so you can stay snug in your home when the winter winds are howling outside.

You may have home insurance, but these steps can help you stay as safe as possible throughout the winter while avoiding unnecessary stress. Make the time now to take care of these critical winterization tips so you and your family can focus on staying comfy and cozy this winter instead of worrying about what happens when these key details are not taken care of. 


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