Benefits of Performing Winter Weatherproofing for Your Home
There are a variety of benefits that can come about from proactively treating and preparing your home for winter weather. For starters, the cost of heating a home during the harsh winter months can be astronomical. You may be pleasantly surprised at how beneficial seemingly small changes can be when it comes to lowering your energy bill month after month this winter season.
Additionally, the high winds, snow, and ice that accompany the winter months can do a lot of damage to the structural components of your home. This damage can build over time. However, you may not notice it until spring or summer roll around again. Taking steps to weatherproof your home now can save you time and money in the long run.
Last but not least, many use the winter season to bundle up inside and keep warm with family and friends. You may notice that some areas of your home remain cozy while others experience drafts that can make your loved ones uncomfortable. Weatherproofing your home can help you maintain a relatively constant climate throughout all areas of the house. This allows you to maximize the comfort of your family and guests.
10 Useful Tips for Weatherproofing Your Home this Winter
You spend a lot of time indoors during the cold winter months. You'll want to make sure that your household remains comfortable and that the main components of your home remain in good working order. The following ten tips can give you a great place to start when it comes to preparing your home for the harsh winter months ahead.
Install Weatherstripping to Windows and Doors
Most of the cold air that comes into your home during the winter will enter through the cracks that exist around your windows and doors. Simple weatherstripping can be applied that will cut down or eliminate these uncomfortable and costly drafts. Weatherstripping is affordable and easy to apply, offering great advantages over the long run.
Cover Seemingly Insignificant Cracks with Caulking
Some cracks can be so tiny that you may think they couldn't possibly contribute to a higher energy bill. The fact remains, every single crack and crevice that exists is just one more entry point for the frigid winds of winter. Filling all noticeable holes and cracks with caulk can instantly create a warmer home environment and a lower energy bill over the coming months.
Cover Window AC Units
If you are like the millions of other families across the country that make use of window air conditioning units, you may not think that these devices contribute to allowing drafts into your home. It's essential to cover window air conditioning units completely to prevent costly drafts and to protect the lifespan of your air conditioner from cold-induced damage.
Update Your Insulation
The insulation in your home is your number one defense against the frigid outside temperatures. However, over a period of time, this insulation can begin to deteriorate. It may need to be replaced entirely. Otherwise, you may only need to add more high-quality insulation in areas where drafts are more likely to occur.
Protect Your Pipes from Bursting
Extreme shifts in temperatures often occur frequently as winter begins to set in. Unfortunately, these temperatures changes can wreak havoc on the pipes throughout your home. If they occur too frequently, they can lead to your pipes bursting and causing extensive water damage to your home. Weatherproofing your pipes and replacing any damaged ones can prevent a great deal of stress and expense surrounding future leaks.
Update Your Heating Device
Whether you use central heating or some other manner of providing warmth to your home, you'll want to use this opportunity to ensure your heating device is energy efficient. Keep in mind, heating devices have a lifespan and need to be updated, maintained, or replaced periodically. If your unit is out of date, it could be adding a lot of money to your heating bill every month.
Change Filters and Clean Vents
The approach of winter is a great time to carefully clean all of your vents and replace the filters in each one. Since you and your family stay cooped up indoors a great deal over the winter, it's imperative to maintain the quality of air throughout your home. This can keep allergens low and will also have a positive impact on the overall health of your family members all winter long.
Prepare Your Chimney for Use
Your chimney has remained dormant for many months now. It is important to carefully inspect and clean it prior to using it for the first time. You'll want to make sure it is free of any debris, allergenic particles, or animal nests that may have accumulated there during the warmer months of the year.
Replace Batteries in Smoke Alarms
Many homeowners use the change of the seasons as a useful reminder to change their carbon monoxide and smoke alarm detectors. Dangerous levels of carbon monoxide can build up within the home with little or no notice. You'll want the peace of mind of knowing your family is safe and protected from emergencies all winter long.
Tend to any Mold or Mildew Issues
During the warm seasons, mold and mildew can begin to grow in moist areas of the home. Cold weather doesn't eliminate these issues. They must be removed and treated promptly to protect the health of your entire household.
Your home is likely your largest investment and a place where you spend a lot of your time during the harsh winter months. The winter weatherproofing tips mentioned above will help you prepare your entire home for the winter season and the inclement weather that accompanies it. You can have peace of mind knowing you've taken every step possible to protect your home and your family this winter season.