Let’s cut to the chase; home maintenance isn’t all that fun. And as we come closer to the holidays, we find ourselves with more and more to do. But as much as we’d like to stay in bed all day and watch re-runs of “Friends,” we all know that home maintenance is an important part of being a home owner.
Lucky for you, we’ve compiled a list of winter home maintenance tips for you to follow to keep your house in tip top shape this holiday season.
Get That Gunk Out of the Gutters
You should really be cleaning out your gutters on a regular basis, but we know it can be difficult to keep up with. But after the last leaf has fallen off that big tree in your front yard, it’s time to give the gutters one last sweep for the winter season. This will keep your house from building up moisture, and help prevent ice dams, which can cause your roof to rot.
We recommend installing heat strips to help keep parts of your gutters from freezing over. Although cleaning your gutters is a relatively easy task, if you want to hire a professional to come scrape all the gunk out, you should expect to pay $100-$200.
Prep That Furnace
Not all furnace models are the same, but it is important to configure your furnace for the winter, as opposed to the summer. In the winter, you want to keep your humidifier open so air can flow through it. In the summer you want to prevent airflow through the humidifier. This can help prevent your skin and eyes from drying out and becoming itchy.
You shouldn’t have any issue changing your humidifier settings, unless your model of furnace does not have this feature. If you’d like to add a humidifier to your furnace, it will run you about $350.
Check Your Attic
Does your property have a draft problem? The issue might lie in your attic. Make sure you’ve properly insulated your attic to prevent this from happening. It’s also a good idea to check for rodents while you’re up there. Critters love to make homes out of attics so make sure any holes are sealed. If you’ve got a serious insulation problem it may be worth it to call in the pros, despite the bill of roughly $1000.
Get Your Property Fireproofed
As the outdoor temperature drops, your heating bill rises. But with indoor heat sources, comes fire hazards. So it’s important to rid your house of any potential fire damage. Remember to replace all your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors too. If you’re unsure about your fire safety efforts you could contact your local fire department to come and do a home safety check. Most fire departments offer this service for free.
Prepare for Heavy Snowfall
You never know when a blizzard could hit, leaving you trapped inside your home with no power. It’s a good idea to have a generator, and some flashlights or lanterns. You may also want a battery-operated radio if you lose cell phone reception as well. You should also leave snow shovels inside your home so you can easily access them in an emergency. A back up food supply is also a good idea.