Winter is just around the corner for us here in South Jersey. While last winter was rather mild, it seems that Jack Frost is already nipping at our noses in early November! As South Jerseyans, we all know how unpredictable the weather can be around this time of year. One day it’s a breezy 55º, then next thing you know, there’s snow on the ground. Get a head start on some winter home preparation with the following tips:
Steps For Winter Home Preparation
Some tips for winter home preparation may seem like common sense. It’s a no-brainer to keep your property warm and secure during winter. However, this may be easier said than done. Here are a few extra steps you can take to ensure your home’s safety.
- Roof and Attic Maintenance: In order to avoid potential leakage, drafts, and severe roof damage this winter, you will want to have your roof inspected by a professional. We highly recommend that you do not attempt to inspect your roof on your own, as this can be potentially dangerous. Your roof should be checked for any missing or damaged shingles, soft spots, or cracks. Any damage that is found should be repaired promptly. If your home has an attic, ensure that it is being properly ventilated to avoid condensation when the warmth of your home meets the cold air. Condensation may freeze during the winter months, but can lead to moisture issues and even mold once it thaws out.
- Repair Drafts: Ensure that there are no cracks or drafts around the windows and doors in your home. Should you come across a draft, seal it up promptly with some caulk. This aids in not only preventing energy waste, but it also helps to avoid mold and moisture damage, as drafts let in moisture as well as cold air.
- Preventing Frozen Pipes: This is one of the most important steps when it comes to winter home preparation. A frozen or burst pipe can lead to severe damage and costly repairs. In order to avoid this, you can add extra insulation around your pipes, keeping them warm and preventing them from freezing.
- Extra Insulation: Identify the areas of your home that may need a little extra help keeping warm this winter. Areas such as attics, crawl spaces and basements, garages, and any exterior walls may need a little extra insulation to help keep them from getting too cold. An exterior wall is any wall that is directly meeting the outdoors on the other side. This will help to not only keep cold air out, but it will keep warm air inside as well. Adding extra insulation may seem a bit excessive, but it can make a huge difference, and may even help you to save on energy.
- HVAC Maintenance: You want to ensure that your heating system is in good working condition before winter. The heating system should be serviced at least once a year anyway, and now is the best time to do so. If you have a furnace or fireplace, these should also be inspected to ensure that they are in good working condition to prevent smoke damage and fire hazards. Your heating system works the hardest during winter, so you want to make sure it can handle what it needs to do.
- Back-up Power: South Jersey occasionally experiences power outages, so it’s a good idea to keep a back-up generator on hand. This will come in handy in the event of a big storm that could potentially cause a power outage. While it is always a good idea to have a back-up power source, it is especially important during winter because it will keep you and your home warm. Not only that, but it will help you to maintain the rest of the winter home preparation you’ve already taken care of.
The Importance of Home Preparation During Winter
Winter is a great time of the year, with lots of reasons to celebrate. However, it can cause a lot of damage without the proper preparations. If you want to err on the side of caution, you could even prepare a winter emergency kit along with the rest of the winter home preparation you’ve done. While winter will come and go, any potential damage could stick around much longer than the season itself. These winter home preparation tips may seem small, but they can make a huge difference. With these tips, your home will be safe, warm, and ready for winter in no time.