With the blizzards and cold fronts coming in this week, it’s safe to assume that winter has arrived in Alberta. If you take the time to winterize your home, you can save yourself future headaches and even a significant amount of money from reduced energy bills.
Clean That Gutter
We loved fall, but fallen autumn leaves can wreak havoc on your home if they get stuck in your gutter. Ensure that you clean out your eavestroughs/gutters so that they are able to properly drain water and prevent any leaks. All you need is a ladder, plastic bucket, gloves and a buddy system! Safety is always important, so make sure you have someone to keep an eye out while you're working.
Get Acquainted with Your Furnace
Preparing your furnace for winter is essential on your home checklist. Your furnace is a vital part of your machinery and something as simple as a clogged filter will restrict hot air flow and may damage the furnace. Replace your furnace filter as needed (once every few months is recommended), vacuum the interior, ensure any vents are unobstructed and if it’s time for a new furnace, upgrade to an efficient Energy Star-certified furnace, which can save you money in the long term.
Don’t let drafty windows put a dent in your energy bills. Instead of reaching for the thermostat, take some measures to prevent cold winds from blowing into your home. The best methods of attack are to caulk the outside of the window and weatherstripping the inside. This is simple enough to do yourself, just be sure to use an exterior-grade caulk and clean the frame of the window before starting, as well as stripping away any old and peeling paint. For more about weatherstripping, check out this Lowe’s guide to doing it yourself.
Don’t forget to drain all of your pipes that lead to outdoor water faucets, as well as any garden hoses. If your home has any exposed outdoor plumbing, wrapping your pipes in insulation can assist in preventing any freezing from taking place. You can get pre-slit pipe foam at most hardware stores in town. R-value practical is the measure of heat-blocking power in insulation, so the highest R-value is ideal.
- Rand Al-Hashmy, Marketing