It’s time to prepare your home for cold weather. Following these home improvement steps will help make your home cozier and more affordable when the temperatures drop.
1. Prevent ice dams.
Ice dams are ridges of ice that form along the edge of your roof and prevent water from draining from the roof. This can lead to water sitting for long periods on your roof and, eventually, leaking into your home. Inadequate insulation is typically the cause of ice dams. By identifying any air leaks or improper insulation in your attic now, you can prevent costly water damage from occurring later this winter.
2. Reverse your ceiling fans
Switching your ceiling fan over to a clockwise direction is a simple trick you can do in the cooler winter months to get the most use out of your fan. A gentle clockwise direction will produce an updraft which forces warm air near the ceiling to travel down into the rest of the room. Typically, your ceiling fan will have a small switch on it that will allow you to change its direction in the winter.
3. Examine your roof.
Now is the best time to look for damaged, loose, or missing shingles on your roof. You want to make sure it is in tip-top shape before the winter elements arrive. Missing shingles could be another place where water seeps in during the winter, leading to more problems. While you or a professional is examining your roof, be sure to check the flashing around your chimney to be sure there are no breaks or cracks.
4. Seal windows and doors.
While they may seem small, gaps around your windows and doors can cause your home to lose a lot of heat during the winter. A good rule of thumb is to apply exterior caulk to any gap that is bigger than the width of a nickel.
5. Clean your gutters.
Winter brings lots of rain and melted snow which means your gutters are going to be working hard! Cleaning out any leaves and debris that could cause clogs or backups is a good idea before the winter begins.
6. Divert water away from your foundation.
As we said above, winter brings lots of rain and moisture that you’ll want to keep away from your home’s foundation. One way to do this is by adding extensions to your downspouts so the water will run at least 3-4 feet away from the foundation. This will help to keep your home warm and dry throughout the winter season!
While it’s fun to focus on seasonal decorations and holiday fun during this time of the year, don’t neglect the important tasks that will help protect your home investment this winter! Give the professionals at Exterior Source a call to help improve your home this winter.