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8 Steps to Winterizing Your Home

To some people’s delight and some people’s dismay, summer is coming to a close. Whether you like it or not, the cold weather and snow will be upon us soon! Here are a few tips to make sure your home is prepared for the wintry weather:

1. Clean Your Gutters – Make sure all the fallen leaves are cleaned out of your gutters and downspouts on a regular basis, so the rain and snow can safely drain away from your home.

2. Check for Leaks – Inspect window and door frames, electrical outlets, recessed lighting, and other drafty areas for leaks, and then seal them up. This will insulate your house against cold and wet weather.

3. Install Attic Insulation – Insulation might be a bit expensive at the outset, but you’ll more than make up for it in energy savings. Make sure you have at least 12 inches of good insulation in your attic before winter hits.

4. Inspect the Furnace – Turn your furnace on now to see if it’s working. If it’s not, call for a repairman before the cold comes. Even if it does seem to be working, it may be a good idea to schedule a cleaning and inspection in the near future anyway to make sure it can last all winter long.

5. Clean the Ducts – It’s a good idea to remove all the dust and other junk that has accumulated in your ducts over the months before you turn on the furnace. Also make sure your ductwork is well-insulated, so the warm air from your heater actually gets to where it’s supposed to go.

6. Inspect Your Chimney – Before you fire up that fireplace, hire someone to inspect your chimney and clean it if necessary.

7. Put Up Storm Windows – If you don’t have storm windows and your windows are drafty, it’s time to upgrade to more energy-efficient windows.

8. Check Your Alarms – Test the smoke detectors in your home and replace the batteries. Also, make sure your home has a functioning carbon monoxide detector.