6 Tips for DIY Winterizing Your Home

by Marcy on October 31, 2013 · 0 comments

how to winterize your home

6 Tips for DIY Winterizing Your Home

By the time fall comes around, most of us have pulled out the sweaters and checked to make sure we have enough blankets. Few of us have gotten motivated enough to get out and winterize our homes. Why? Well for many it is because we perceive it as being difficult or time consuming. Some tasks can be, but the majority are quick and easy. Preparing our homes for the cold of winter is a vital step towards being comfortable and keeping energy costs down. A home that is properly winterized is going to cost less to heat than a home that is not. In addition, taking care of your home to PREVENT problems can save you big bucks in the long run!

Not sure where to start? Here are 6 DIY Tips to get started on Winterizing Your Home that you can try:

1) Gutter Duty – We might as well get this one over with! It certainly is not the most glamorous part of winterizing but it is a necessary evil. Starting with one of the toughest duties is a good idea because the rest is gravy after that.

To properly prepare the gutters for winter, you must first remove the leaves that have fallen during the autumn season. Most people do this with their hands, but you can also use pretty much anything that will grab them up. Once you have the bulk of the leaves cleared out, run a water hose through the gutters to check for leaks, wash away the small leftovers, and observe how far the water drains. If it is not draining far enough away from the foundation of your home, complete any needed repairs. You may need to purchase a gutter addition/flex pipe that will move the water farther away from your home.

2) Check out your insulation – Poor insulation will ruin any good winter season because your house will feel drafty all of the time. This in turn causes you to turn up the heat, raise your bill and send money out through your attic space. It’s important to make sure that you have about a foot of insulation in your attic. Also, if you have a basement you should check it out as well. Make sure you are sealed up tightly. Great insulation will be a huge boost to your winterization cost savings.

3) Audit your outside – Walk around the perimeter of your home and seal up any cracks or holes. The last thing you want is to have openings for the air to get in or the heat to get out. Search closely around windows, doors and along the foundation. These are the common areas where problems arise. Also be sure to check your foundation and garage doors for holes that rodents can get in to. These can be quickly sealed with spray foam that quickly hardens and prevents a barrier.

4) Now, the inside – Repeat the previous process inside and also consider installing sweepers under the doors. The windows may need some insulating and  you will almost certainly need to reseal around the doors. Check this out completely and keep that heat in!

5) Change all of your filters – Go around the house and change your filters. This is something you should do often anyway, but starting out the winter with fresh ones will only help. While you are at it, replace the batteries in your smoke detectors and double check your fire extinguishers!

6) Have your furnace and fireplace inspected – Many folks do this themselves, but it is advised that you pay a pro to do it. Something as important as  your heating resources should be in top working order if at all possible. If you are determined to do it yourself, at least consult someone who knows what they are doing. This is dangerous work if you are not careful. Don’t forget to clean the chimney! Personally, we have our furnace inspected every other year, but check with your local pro to determine a plan that works for you.

These are the most common things one should do to winterize their home. Stick to this list and you should be in good shape by the time the winter season sets in!

What tips would you add to this list?

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