10 Areas of Your Home and Office to Prep for Winter
As temperatures cool and it gets dark earlier, it’s time to prep your home and office for winter. Winterization involves reviewing your critical structural and mechanical systems to help protect your structure from the winter elements. Below are areas you should focus on when winterizing.
1. Air Conditioning System
Winterizing your air conditioner unit can protect it from winter conditions and keep it in top working condition. Use a hose to clean the fan blades and condensing coils of debris and dirt. Let the unit dry completely and cover it for the season. Covering it with a plastic or waterproof vinyl cover will help extend its life and performance.
2. Water Pipes
Winterizing water pipes can help prevent leaks and breaks. Look for pipes on outside walls, in crawlspaces, attics and other unheated spaces. Insulate them with insulation sleeves, wrapping or using slip-on foam pipe insulation. You’ll also want to disconnect and drain your garden hoses. Shut off the water supply to exterior faucets and drain any remaining water.
3. Smoke Detectors
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends changing the batteries in your smoke alarm every six months. Smoke detectors are less effective over time. Replace your detectors every 10-years.
4. Sprinkler System
Make it an annual habit to winterize your irrigation system. Shut off the water supply to your system, drain the pipes and blow out any remaining water. Once the system is drained, close all valves. Removing water prevents the system from freezing and lines from cracking.
Sealed windows help prevent cold air from entering, saving you money on heating costs. Hold a piece of paper around the perimeter of the window, if it moves, there's a leak. Use a quality exterior caulk to seal any gaps you find.
Door sweeps provide a physical barrier against cold seeping in. Unfortunately, they can rip, bend or wear out. Check exterior doors for signs of wearing and replacing where necessary.
Weather changes, age and flying branches can cause roof damage. Do a quick check of the roof looking for loose, damaged or missing shingles and make any necessary repairs.
Also, check the chimney flashing for cracks, rust or warped metal. Chimney flashing creates a waterproof seal to protect your chimney and roof from water damage.
If your gutters aren’t clear, water will collect along the edge of your roof and behind the gutters leading to rotting and seepage. Make sure gutters and downspouts are clear of leaves and debris. Wet leaves in your gutters add weight and volume when frozen, increasing the risk of damage.
9. Outdoor Items
You'll want to prepare your yard and outdoor areas for the change in season. Protect furniture and your grill by cleaning, covering or storing in a shed or garage during the winter. Fall is also time to patch cracks or damage to concrete steps or walkways.
10. Ceiling Fans
Did you know your ceiling fan changes directions? Switch the fan clockwise direction after you turn on your heat. The fan will produce an updraft and push down into the room with heated air from the ceiling.
Glowacki Management Company can help manage your office space and prep it for winter weather. Call Garrett Shames at (814) 452-3681 to learn more.