As the last of summer’s heat grows into a memory, and you’re pulling out your jackets more than your flip-flops, it’s time to tackle a few simple chores that’ll make winter more pleasant and the first thing to do to prepare for the seasonal change is to check your insulation. Here’s a quick tip: If you can see the wood beams in your attic, it’s time to add more. The key to keeping cold out is finding out how it’s getting in.
Angie Hicks, Angie’s List Founder says, “The first sign of cold is a great time to check the seals around your windows and doors, and an easy, do-it-yourself way to do that is to take a candle around in front of the windows lit and if it flickers, then you probably have a draft that needs attention.”
If you’re starting to see cracks in your caulking, don’t worry – it’s an easy task with the right tools. David Price, Well Done Handyman & Home Renovations says, “Don’t go cheap on a caulk gun because then you’ll have a caulk gun that stays triggered and then it continues to spread the caulk, so don’t get any real cheap caulk gun. Get one that works really well.”
Before the cold wether really hits, make sure your gutters are clear of leaves and debris. For your own safety make sure your chimney is clean; service your furnace and change the filter; and show some love to your water heater – you don’t want to be stuck without any of these in the dead of winter.
Hicks says, “Many homeowners don’t think about their water heater until it goes out and they get a cold shower, but there is some simple maintenance you can do that can really increase the efficiency of your water heater. Simply by draining the water heater once a year, you can increase its efficiency by 50 percent.”
Be sure your summer equipment, such as your lawn mower, is appropriately maintained and stored. Chris Arvin, Mow Better says, “Fuel is the biggest issue on storage of the mower over the winter time. Either run it out of fuel and store it completely empty or stabilize the fuel and store it full.”
For more home tips visit Angie’s List website.