Winter-Proof Your Home
WINTER CHECKLIST FOR YOUR HOME
- Clean leaves and debris out of window wells, gutters and downspouts to keep water from pooling and freezing.
- Install screens on exterior vents and pet doors to keep rodents out. Make sure garage doors close completely, too.
- Clear ground clutter such as sticks and lawn ornaments - tripping hazards come snowfall.
- Trim shrubs and trees to keep branches from breaking and blowing onto the house.
- Turn off water taps and bring in hoses (water inside hoses might freeze and expand, causing damage).
- Ensure stairwell handrails are sturdy and secure. When it gets slippery, you'll want to grip them.
- Clear the chimney of obstructions, such as birds' nests, and any built-up (and flammable) creosote.
- Check the roof for loose or broken shingles or flashing and patch if necessary.
- Remove window screens and install storm windows for better insulation.
- Redo caulking and weatherstripping around doors and windows, and fill any remaining gaps with insulation foam, to seal heat in.
- Check the attic, basement, windows and doors for air leaks. Darkened, dirty spots in insulation, or a candle flame wavering in a draft, may signal a leak.
- Have your furnace checked by a professional. Change the filter if needed (do this every 3 months, or sooner if the filter looks dirty).
- Install carbon monoxide detectors. The risk of carbon monoxide poisoning increases when furnaces are in frequent use and leaks more likely.
- Move flammable materials and electric appliances away from heating devices.
- Reverse ceiling fans to a clockwise spin to push warm air down from the ceiling, for improved heating efficiency.
- Change outdoor lightbulbs and set automatic light timers for earlier hours of darkness.
- Test downspouts to ensure proper drainage from the roof.
As always, if disaster strikes, SERVPRO of Springfield and Sangamon, Morgan, Cass, Montgomery Counties is always here for you. We can be reached 24/7 at 217-528-7775.