It’s that time of year again! Time to winterize. Why is winterizing so important?

Your biggest asset is your home or place of business. Keeping it up and protected from the elements is of utmost priority. We tend to let the businesses of life, let us forget that our home needs constant attention to keeps its value increasing with the market.

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Here are our tips for winterizing your home or business!

  1. Clean gutters:
    1. Debris can build up and keep the rainwater/snow from flowing in the right direction. It can pool up around basement windows or around your foundation causing damage. The weight of the debris can also be too much of a load for the gutter hangers causing them to eventually rip off the roof eaves.
    2. Consider gutter guards if you have live in an area with heavy leaf and debris fall.
  2. Pipes and faucets:
    • Remove all hoses and disconnect any irrigation systems open to the elements, drain pipes. They can freeze and break pipes. Make sure all pipes exposed to elements are protected with pipe insulation.
  3. Fire Safety:
    1. Test all smoke detectors and CO detectors. Replace any batteries that need to be replaced. Check dates on all fire extinguishers. Replace any out of date. If you are lucky enough to have a fireplace, make sure to check flue for debris. This extra step can prevent chimney fires, which are far more common than you think!
  4. Heating and Ventilation:
    1. Schedule a local professional company to service your furnace. If you have wall heaters, vacuum out all dust prior to turning them on. Replace any air filters and if possible clean all ducting. Close any attic vents and turn off any attic or basement fans. All window air conditioners should be removed and window screen safely reinstalled.
  5. Windows and Doors:
    • Window and door seals are commonly overlooked. Check each window and door for any cracks, drying and/or wear. Replace all worn seals. A cost evaluation of new vinyl windows and doors can be given for efficiency savings. Your ROI is usually worth the replacements.
    • If you have single pane windows or broken windows and you can not financially replace them, consider window seal kits. These will greatly improve your home efficiency.
  6. Insulation:
    • Check to make sure attic and basement insulation has not been damaged by animals or weather in the previous warmer months. Any holes, gaps or tears, can reduce your efficiency greatly. Replace and/or add any insulation. It will significantly improve your homes efficiency.
  7. Siding:
    • Check all sides of your home. Make sure there are no loose, damaged or missing siding pieces from your home. Check to see all caulking is still function and not dry.
  8. Walkways, driveways, and sidewalks:
    • Make sure all moss is removed from any walking areas. The wet weather can cause sever fall hazards on your property. Consider solar powered walkway lights for darker months.
  9. Basement or crawlspace:
    • Make sure sump pump is fully functioning. Close-off any openings in your foundation, animals can crawl in and make a home. From experience, they can wreak havoc on your wiring, insulation and wood joists under your house.
  10. Roof:
    • Check roof for missing shingles. Check for leaks, cracks or any damage to roof. Repair to prevent further damage to home.
  11. Trim back any plants or trees that may drop hazardous limbs during heavy wind.
  12. Give your deck a fresh coat of sealer to protect from winter weather.
  13. Reverse ceiling fans to create an updraft, to bring heat down into the room.
  14. Store all patio furniture exposed to the winter elements.
  15. Close foundation vents.
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