The days are growing shorter and the nights are getting cold. Winter is coming and homeowners across the Greater Kansas City Area may be feeling as if they’re running out of time to get the house in good shape to bear the ravages of the cold winter months ahead. It’s gonna be a cold one this time. All the weather forecasters are predicting colder-than-average temperatures and heavier-than-average snowfall. So, what does that mean to forward-thinking homeowners around the region? It means there are only a few weekends left to go through the pre-winter checklist for the house. Here’s a short list of things you might want to take into consideration before the temperatures drop to freezing and the snow begins to fall:
1. Check the furnace to see that it’s in good working order. Also, make sure that the filters have been changed in the furnace and the humidifier.
2. Reverse the ceiling fans. Not many folks do this as we move from warmer weather to colder weather, but it’s a big help in those homes that have vaulted ceilings. Make sure that your ceiling fans are turning clockwise during the cold winter months. This pushes the warm air down from above and will save you money on your heating bill!
3. Check the weatherstripping around all the doors. If the weatherstripping is worn or old, it may not be able to do its job, and you’ll get a terrible draft in the house when the cold wind blows.
4. Trim any branches or bushes back from the house. During blustery winter weather, snow and ice-caked branches can whip in the wind and cause damage to the exterior of your home, as well as windows and gutters. Also, trim back any foliage around your heat pump (if you have one) to keep it cycling air without being hampered by leaves and branches against the air intake surface.
5. Clean out your gutters before the snow begins to fall. We wrote an entire blog article on this subject alone. It’s important. You might also want to check your downspouts and drainage blocks to make sure that they’re diverting water away from the house.
6. Bring in your hoses, tools, patio furniture, plants, and anything outside that you don’t want suffering all through the winter cold and snow.
7. Check and replace the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. You may also want to replace the batteries in any flashlights and battery-operated emergency radios as well.
8. Test your sump pump to make sure that it’s working well. No one likes a flooded basement when the snow melt begins.
9. Replace your window screens with storm windows.
10. Check the fireplace and the chimney to make sure that all is in working order. You may even have to call out a chimney sweep if you live in a much older home that hasn’t had a chimney inspection in a while.
This article was brought to you by Continental Siding in Kansas City, your Midwest vinyl and polymer siding company. We’re a leading provider of home improvement products and services that aim to help them keep homes looking great and performing well.