Your Winter Home Maintenance Checklist

Your Winter Home Maintenance Checklist
Published on January 9, 2024

Winter home maintenance is crucial to ensure your home remains cozy and functional during the colder months while protecting your investment. Specific tasks become essential to protect your property from the harsh winter conditions as temperatures drop. Here’s a comprehensive winter home maintenance checklist to help you prepare for the season.

Inspect and Clean Gutters

Clogged gutters can lead to ice dams and water damage. Before the winter sets in, clear out leaves, debris, and any blockages. Ensure that water can flow freely to prevent ice buildup. Take a look at where the water flows from the eaves. Does it gather in a pool against the foundation of your home? That can lead to future problems and costly repairs down the road.

Check Your Roof

Inspect the roof for damaged or missing shingles. Winter weather can exacerbate existing issues, so addressing them beforehand is crucial. Consider hiring a professional if needed. Above all else, be safe! Ensure someone knows you are up there when you go on the roof.

Seal Gaps and Cracks

Prevent drafts and heat loss by sealing gaps around windows and doors. Use weather stripping and caulk to keep the warmth inside the home and the cold outside.

Insulate Pipes

Frozen pipes can lead to significant damage. Insulate exposed pipes in basements, attics, and crawl spaces to prevent freezing. Consider using heating tape for added protection.

Service Your Heating System

Schedule a professional to inspect and service your heating system. Clean or replace filters, check for leaks and ensure your furnace operates efficiently. Remember, changing your filters at least every three months (or more frequently if you have pets or allergies) will help keep your health in check.

Test Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Ensuring your detectors are functioning correctly with heating systems working overtime is crucial. Replace batteries and test alarms to guarantee they are in working order.

Prepare Your Fireplace

If you have a fireplace, have it inspected and cleaned by a professional chimney sweep. A clean chimney allows for proper airflow, promoting efficient combustion and heating, leading to better energy efficiency and cost savings on your heating bills. A clean chimney reduces the risk of buildup and chimney fires, ensuring the safety of your home and family. Stock up on firewood, ensure the damper is working correctly and enjoy the warmth and coziness of your safe fireplace.

Check Insulation

Inspect the insulation in your attic and walls. Proper insulation is essential for retaining heat and reducing energy costs. Add insulation where needed to maintain a comfortable temperature indoors.

Winterize Outdoor Faucets

Disconnect and drain outdoor hoses and shut off the water supply to outdoor faucets to prevent freezing and potential pipe damage.

Clean and Store Outdoor Furniture

Protect your outdoor furniture by cleaning it thoroughly, storing it in a dry place, or covering it with outdoor furniture covers. Caring for it this way extends its lifespan and saves you from replacing items in the spring.

Service Your Snow Removal Equipment

Make sure your snowblower and shovels are in good working order. Stock up on pet and environmentally-friendly ice melt and sand to keep walkways and driveways safe. Waxing your shovels helps keep the snow from sticking to it.

Inspect Trees and Trim Branches

Heavy snow and ice can cause branches to break and damage your property. Inspect trees for dead or overhanging limbs and trim them before winter storms arrive.

Clean Dryer Vents

Lint buildup in dryer vents is a fire hazard. Clean the vents thoroughly to ensure proper airflow and reduce the risk of fires. Be sure to find a reputable vent-cleaning company to help you. Ask a friend, neighbour, or someone you know who previously had their vents cleaned for recommendations from a reputable company.

Prepare for Emergencies

Prepare for power outages with an emergency kit with essentials like flashlights, batteries, blankets, water, and non-perishable food items.

Following this winter home maintenance checklist will prepare you well for any challenges the colder months may bring. Taking these proactive steps ensures your home’s safety and comfort and saves you from potentially costly repairs in the future.

Written by:

Royal LePage Burloak Real Estate Services
3060 Mainway Suite 200, Burlington, ON L7M 1A3 (905) 335-3042

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