When winter comes it makes sense to be sure your house is ready. After all, no one wants to deal with home maintenance when it is cold outside, nor deal with the consequences that can arise when your home has not been adequately prepared or protected – especially now that we are seeing more extremes of weather than ever before. You do not have to spend a weekend in the DIY store to be able to prepare your home for winter weather. There are some key measures and steps that are easy but that will give you peace of mind all winter long.
Get Your Boiler Checked
Getting your boiler checked is important. It is a good idea to have your boiler serviced annually, and the closer to winter, the better. You do not want to suffer a central heating breakdown or be without hot water when it is snowing outside. It is also helpful to check the radiators at this point; make sure the thermostats work and bleed if necessary.
Inspect your Roof
Loose or missing roof tiles can leave your roof susceptible to leaking when it snows or rains heavily. Get up there and check your entire roof for damage or problems. If you see anything that needs attention, fix it. Have the roof serviced if the job is more than you can handle on your own.
Check Your Drains
Before it gets too cold outside, check your ground level drains to be sure they are not clogged with fallen leaves or other debris. A clogged drain can cause all sorts of damage to your house if water gets backed up and has nowhere to go. Carefully clear all your drains and downspouts and you will be set for the entire winter.
Clean Your Gutters
Just like you clear out your drains, you should also clean out your gutters. If they are packed with leaves, dirt and other junk, they will not do a decent job of keeping snow and water off your roof and away from the house.
Lag the Pipes
Even when you have central heating, it is sensible to lag pipes. Britain is seeing colder winter temperatures (even though the climate has warmed up generally, the extremes of temperature are further apart). And if you do not know where it is, now is a good time to locate your stopcock. Lagging your pipes where possible can help to prevent them from bursting in freezing temperatures.
Unhook or Turn off Outdoor Taps
Now is the time to unhook your garden hoses and turn off outdoor taps. This helps keep your pipes from freezing and then bursting, something no one ever wants to deal with. Keep the taps off and hoses unhooked until spring comes back around.
Clear the Garden
Now that it is cold, be sure to remove dead plants and debris from your garden. That way the soil can lay fallow until next planting season and you will not have a bunch of plants rotting under the snowfall if we are lucky enough to get some. Store any outdoor furniture, decorative items or plants that cannot withstand the cold temperatures.
Shovel the Snow
when it does snow, be sure you shovel off your paths, driveway and away from your house. This protects your home and prevents melting snow from freezing overnight and damaging your house. Plus, it is safer for friends and family if your paths are clear of slippery snow and ice, especially if you grit your paths too.
Of course, if you do not feel up to the tasks of preparing your home for winter, it’s a good idea to call in a professional. Home maintenance is important during all seasons to protect your house and its occupants. You never want to be anything less than diligent when it comes to wintertime home care.