Fall Tips to Prepare you Home for Long Ottawa Winters
We hate to talk about this in September, but it’s inevitable, an Ottawa winter is on its way and that means now is the best time to prep your house for the elements. You’ll thank us mid- winter when your home is running smoothly and snuggly while the weather outside remains frightful.
Over the next month we urge you to start thinking about how to prepare for the winter. This includes not only servicing, upgrading and repairing but also cleaning, ordering and organizing for winter. The Home Guyz have prepared a checklist of things to get done over the next few months to ensure that you go into the winter season feeling organized and prepared. Not only will the winter maintenance make life easier, it could benefit you later. If you decide to sell your home, having done the seasonal maintenance and repairs your house will have far more curb appeal and higher value. You may find that the efficiency of your home increases (yay for saving money) and that regular maintenance will keep the home on better working order.
Many of these tasks can be done yourself, however; some tasks may require professional services. While this may seem costly, having regular maintenance will not only ensure the job is done right, but in the long-run paying for an annual check-up will increase the lifespan of your homes fundamental elements and save yourself on hefty repair costs and huge inconveniences in the long run. Make sure to take a look through your service agreement, or any additional insurance you may have alongside your mortgage as this may cover annual services so you should certainly take advantage of these existing benefits.
- Change your floor mats - Everyone hates a soaker. Make sure to upgrade to your winter matts, switch out your novelty doormat and get out the larger heavy-duty floor mats that can absorb all that salt and slush. This will protect your flooring from salt stains, although it’s ugly, it’s a necessity during an Ottawa winter.
- Caulk windows and cracks - The best way to keep drafty doors and windows in check. Here is a great DIY video of how-to best caulk windows to keep the drafts out and keep your home more energy efficient.
- Get your chimneys swept - If you have a wood burning fire, your chimney will be full of soot that accumulates and can be a safety hazard. We don’t recommend this as a DIY, it’s messy and difficult and takes the right equipment but the job is essential to keep you family safe. Here is a local company who can help.
- Turn off outside water - Disconnect hose and store inside. Take inside any lawn furniture, outdoor rugs and cushions, or lawn ornaments that can’t withstand a harsh winter. Bring umbrellas indoors for storage.
- Get Heating system serviced - Replace your filter and get a general furnace check up. Refer back to your maintenance agreement, or additional insurance you have alongside your mortgage as this may cover annual servicing. You want to flag anything that may need fixing as early as possible before being caught without heat on a cold winter’s day.
- Prep your emergency boxes in both car and home - Make sure you have candles, flashlights, batteries, blankets and fully charged spare cell phone battery. Don’t forget to put your snow brush in your car, make sure your windshield wipers are up to par and book your appointment to get your winter tires changes, don’t wait until the first snow fall or you won’t get an appointment!
- Trim your trees - Do a quick check for any deal branches or tree branches that may be touching your homes roof. Cut them back to eliminate any branches breaking off and causing damage during an ice storm.
- Check you smoke and carbon monoxide detectors - If there is one thing on the list that’s a must, it is this one. Give them a quick check to keep your family safe. Did you know that the majority of house fires happen in the winter?! It’s important to make sure that they’re all in good working order.
- Prepare for snow removal - Whether using a service or shovelling yourself make sure you have everything you need in good working order. Order or buy salt ahead of time, so you don’t get caught off-guard with the first freezing rain coming sooner than expected and no salt to throw down. Start-up your snow blower and make sure it’s easily accessible and in good working order. If you use a professional service, contact them early and get your contract in order.
- Clean your gutters - In late fall clean out the gutters from leaves and debris. As your up a ladder, you may as well plan ahead and put up your Christmas lights (but don’t turn them on too early, don’t be that person)
So there you have it, The Home Guyz list to winter preparation for your home. Taking pride in home ownership, keeping your house properly maintained will keep your house’s value high and will save you a lot of unexpected costs and repairs.