How to Prep Your Home for Cold Winter Weather

Winter will soon be upon us once again. Love it or hate it, the cold weather brings with it various challenges. From staying warm to driving safely in icy and snowy conditions, the winter months can also be extremely tough on our homes. As such, preparing today, in the milder fall months, is a great way to protect a property from potential harm between now and the spring.
Suitably winterizing your home in anticipation of the colder months arriving can be as simple as addressing just a handful of key points. From checking your heating system to installing a smart thermostat, here’s a closer look at what you can do to prep your home for the winter temperatures that are now fast on the approach.

Check Your Heating System

Ahead of winter, it’s always a good idea to give a home’s heating system a proper checkup. For complete peace of mind before the colder weather arrives, consider scheduling a service or inspection of your heating system by a reputable contractor.
Alternatively, explore the possibility of taking out an annual maintenance agreement. Not only does this keep everything running smoothly, but it also helps to prevent potential future breakdowns. In addition, periodic servicing and maintenance allow small issues to be spotted before they become major problems.
Where a property has an open fire, remember to arrange for the chimney cleaning as necessary. With that taken care of, don’t forget to stock up on firewood, either.

Inspect a Property’s Drainage

Adequate drainage is vital in removing standing water from the areas immediately surrounding any property. Where water is allowed to pool, it can begin to cause all manner of problems, including serious issues with a home’s foundations. It may be necessary to adjust one or more rain gutter downspouts. Where simple adjustments aren’t adequate in directing away excess water, purchase downspout extenders to help.
At the same time, simply filling in any low spots immediately surrounding your property with soil can help facilitate better drainage and stop water from accumulating in unwanted areas.
Inspecting a property’s drainage provisions also provides a perfect opportunity to clean the gutters simultaneously. Cleaning any guttering ahead of winter is crucial in stopping them from backing up and overflowing. When gutters overflow, water ends up where it shouldn’t, causing deterioration to a home’s exterior and foundations, plus potential water infiltration in basements and other areas.

Install a Smart Thermostat

Smart thermostats are a relatively new innovation. They’re a particularly valuable asset during the colder months and a great way to prep your home for winter.
A smart thermostat provides a wealth of benefits, including improved energy efficiency, cost-saving potential, and remote access – all extremely useful, especially in winter. They’re better for the environment than traditional thermostats, too, which is a nice added bonus.

Test Smoke Alarms

More house fires occur in December and January than at any other time of the year. Accordingly, testing your home’s smoke alarms ahead of and throughout the colder winter months is essential. In reality, you should check them periodically throughout the year. Either way, winter arriving is the perfect opportunity to remember to do so and to remind yourself of the continued importance of maintaining the habit year-round moving forward.
While testing any smoke alarms, also be sure to carry out the same checks on your carbon monoxide detectors. No carbon monoxide detectors installed? Now would be an excellent time to see to that, too, then.

Other Considerations to Prep Your Home for Winter

If you have an outdoor pool or spa, you’ll want to take steps to winterize those. Along the same lines, drain any small water features in your yard and unplug the pumps. Now’s also the perfect opportunity to clean and correctly store garden tools, grills, and other barbecue equipment. Furthermore, don’t forget to drain the gas in your lawnmower, if you have one. The same goes for all gas-powered lawn tools, in fact.
Finally, give the exterior of your property a good once-over. Pay special attention to roofing, chimneys, flues, flashings, moldings, and external pipework. Simple issues, you should be able to remedy yourself. However, don’t be afraid to call in a professional.
Where expert help is required, now’s the time to arrange that. Demand from other homeowners will likely increase significantly as the cold weather starts to bite, so get in there early and have everything taken care of ahead of time.

Protecting Tech During Winter

Winter brings snow and rain, which can easily damage tech if you’re not careful. Luckily, Upsie offers extended warranties that include accidental protection for a range of electronics, including smartphones, laptops, and tablets.
Upsie also offers extended warranties for larger electronics, such as TVs and smart thermostats. For example, a smart thermostat warranty can protect the device from manufacturer defects, mechanical failures, and more.
With a home tech warranty from Upsie, customers save up to 70 percent on the cost of coverage compared to purchasing a policy elsewhere. In addition, all of Upsie’s warranties have comparable or superior to those sold by manufacturers and big-box retailers.

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* This article is over 6 months old and may or may not be updated.