Winter Home Maintenance Checklist

Here in Minnesota, we try to avoid this for as long as possible.  Yet, with the first snow flurries on the ground, we think it is officially safe to say winter is upon us!  Is your home ready for the havoc that winter can wreak?  Double check to make sure that your hibernation hut is up for the task ahead with this winter home maintenance checklist:

  • Keep your home’s warmth in!  Avoid warm air escaping by insulating the outside walls and unheated areas of your house.  Wrap any pipes near exterior walls or in crawl spaces, as well as all heating duct work, with insulation or heating tape.  Also, caulk or weather-seal all windows to cut down on wind drafts.  Not only will these tasks help to keep you toasty warm, these insulation strategies can also help to keep your energy costs under control.
  • Avoid Frozen Pipes. When the temperature drops below twenty-degrees fahrenheit the potential for damage as a result of frozen pipes greatly increases.  To manage exterior pipes, detach all gardening hoses and shut off the water supply to exterior faucets.  As an extra safety precaution, check the water from your home faucets on a regular basis – reduced water flow can be an early sign of frozen pipes.
  • Prevent Ice Dams. Ice dams occur when ice forms on gutters or on the eaves and valleys of your roof, preventing melting snow and ice from running off.  When this happens, water can back up, seep under shingles and tiles, and cause serious home damage.  Prevent this by ensuring that your gutters are kept clear of leaves and debris.  Also be sure that your attic is properly insulated to further prevent ice dams from forming on your roof.

 

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