5 Ways to Prepare Your House for Winter
We like to joke about how long and hard the winters in Canada are. While there’s a lot to look forward to in the wintertime — like skiing and hot chocolate — you need to get your house ready for winter.
Winter in Canada means freezing temperatures and a lot of ice and snow. You need to think about how cold weather can damage your house. Of course, you have home insurance just in case, but it’s a lot easier to do preventative maintenance than to put it in a claim for repairs.
There are a lot of steps you can take to get your house prepared for winter in New Brunswick. These are some of the most important ones:
- Get your furnace professionally tuned up
- Check all your doors and windows for leaks
- Clean out your gutters and check the roof
- Outdoor maintenance
- Pad exposed pipes in unheated areas
And if something does happen despite all your preparations, we’re here for you! You can always call us to learn more about how your home insurance in New Brunswick works and how to put in a claim.
Have Your Furnace Professionally Tuned Up
The last thing you want to have to deal with in the winter is a broken-down furnace. You can save yourself a lot of aggravation and some frigid days by doing some routine maintenance now. You should:
- Change the filter
- Have the furnace professionally serviced by a reputable HVAC contractor
- Update your programmable thermostat to reflect the new weather
You may want to consider an annual maintenance agreement. That will ensure you have regularly scheduled checkups of your heating and cooling systems in the spring and the fall.
Check Your Windows and Doors for Leaks
With winter comes windy weather. And you don’t want that wind rushing through your house, so check all your windows and doors for leaks. You should:
- Check that all your windows and doors are correctly sealed by checking weather-stripping.
- Replace weather-stripping where necessary and also put caulking in where you think drafts are coming in.
If you have a large picture window, you may want to seal it. Even double or triple-paned glass can still let a draft in if the sealant or stripping is old! You can purchase a film sealing kit and use it to seal the window. This will help both keep the warmth in and the drafts out.
Clean Out Your Gutters and Check Your Roof
Another task to tackle is cleaning out your gutters. All kinds of stuff can come down in the fall, such as leaves and sticks, that can clog your gutters. A clogged gutter can’t drain properly, which causes water to build-up.
If water builds up, it can leak into your house, damaging your walls and your furnishings. And while leaks may be covered under your home insurance policy, it’s better to avoid them in the first place.
In addition to cleaning your gutters, it’s essential to check on the state of your roof. A few damaged or missing shingles can easily be replaced, but if you have several issues, it’s best to call in a professional and get things fixed while there isn’t snow piled on your roof!
Take Care of Outside Maintenance
There are several things you need to consider in terms of outside maintenance:
- Make sure any outside faucets are turned off, and you’ve disconnected any garden hoses. Don’t forget to drain the line to the outside tap.
- Do a cleanup job on your trees and bushes. This will reduce the likelihood of branches breaking off and hitting your house if you get a harsh winter storm.
- If you have a pool, make sure it’s adequately drained and covered.
- Check the state of your patio, driveway, and walks. Make sure they don’t require any significant maintenance, such as having cracks filled or sealed.
Insulate Exposed Pipes
Everyone always dreads the idea of a burst pipe — and it’s for a good reason. Even if your home insurance covers it, water damage is time-consuming and messy to repair.
The good news is that there’s an easy way to avoid having burst pipes. If you have exposed pipes, protect them from the cold by fitting them with insulation sleeves. Check around your house in places like the basement and the attic to find exposed pipes.
What kind of home insurance can Archway Insurance offer me?
We want you to be able to come home at the end of the day and feel safe and secure in your home. You shouldn’t have to worry about your home getting damaged during winter, which is why we encourage you to prepare your house properly before the weather turns.
Taking the following steps can help you get your home prepared for winter.
- Get a professional to tune-up your furnace
- Make sure your doors and windows don’t leak
- Make sure your gutters are clean and your roof doesn’t need repairs
- Check that your yard, patio, and driveway are in good shape
- Make sure any exposed pipes are well-protected against the cold