Winter is less than a couple of weeks away and it’s about time we start talking about making your home safe and cozy for the cold weather!
Sure, it may not yet be as aggressively cold as Winter usually is, but you will feel a lot of difference if you neglect to make your home ready. Poorly sealed windows, unclean air ducts, a malfunctioning HVAC…all of these will not only be uncomfortable but also cost you money one way or another - either because of an expensive repair (that could have been cheaper if done sooner) or because of wasted energy.
Therefore, these are the home improvement projects that will make a difference for you!
HVAC Maintenance and Upgrade
Perhaps the most crucial element to guarantee a cozy home as colder days starting showing up is making sure your HVAC system is properly maintained and up-to-date.
There are some basics elements you can check for yourself:
- Make sure your filters are new and well installed; dirty filters can severely damage air quality
- Check to see if ducts are clean
- Perform a quick test of all your HVAC functions (heat, cold, etc.), to see if all its capabilities are in perfect working order
And don’t forget your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors - they also need to be working as a safety measure!
The great thing about insulating your home is how much you can save in energy bills by making it more energy efficient. Good insulation can reduce the cost of energy bills up to 40%!
Here are some useful tools for you:
For the same reason insulation works wonders during cold weather, you want to have your windows properly sealed. It keeps rooms warm for longer and prevents cold breezes from disrupting the coziness of your home.
To make sure your windows will endure the cold weather, follow this checklist:
- Check for broken or damaged windows and repair them right away - leaving this for later may be more expensive, as the cold weather could damage the windows further.
- Even if the window looks fine, it may still need sealing. Check for drafts during windy days to pinpoint the problem spots.
- To be safe, have a pro inspect all your windows - a simple inspection might reveal problems you could otherwise miss.
Roof and Siding
Any roofing and siding repairs are better dealt with before winter, and since fall is right around the corner with its cold days and falling leaves, you’ll sleep a lot better knowing the roof over your head can endure the harsh weather.
What you have to do right away is:
- Check for cracks or leaks both on the roof and siding - these are the first things you need to look out for. The sooner the better.
- Different roof and siding types may require different solutions. When in doubt, talk to a pro!
- Check your gutters for leaks, animal nesting, and clogging.
A good chimney sweep right before you start using it again is an obligatory safety precaution. It will prevent any permanent damage to your home and keep the chimney in perfect condition to warm your family!
There are many reasons why a chimney is perfect for the cold weather, but you have to care for it just as much as you would for your HVAC - perhaps even more.
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You may also find these useful:
The Ultimate Fall Checklist For Your Home
9 Ways To Improve Air Quality At Home (And Avoid Allergies!)
The 5 Most Popular Roofing Materials Explained
How to Choose the Right Insulation (And Save Money!)