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Prepare Your Home For Winter

Published on October 7th, 2015

prepare your home for winter

prepare your home for winter

Fall is officially here! With fall in Chicago comes chillier weather, harsher conditions and soon enough…winter. It’s important to prepare your home for winter, not only so you and your family can more comfortably enjoy the space but to also protect your investment (your home) in the long run.

Here are our 10 tips on how prepare your home for winter. Also, make sure to print our convenient fall home cleaning checklist template below to make sure you stay on track.

  1. Freeze-Proof Exterior Faucets. An outdoor hose faucet can often be the root of burst water pipe issues when colder weather arrives. Prepare ahead of time to avoid this by replacing your existing hose faucet with a freeze-proof faucet.
  2. Clean Roof Gutters. Preparing your home for winter includes some preliminary work in the fall. Clear out leaves, dirt and any other debris from your gutters to avoid pesky problems in the future such as leaks.
  3. Leave the Weather and Dirt from Your Day at The Door. Create an entry stopping area for you, family and guests to leave their wet boots and coats. Prepare for the winter weather (and keeping it outside) by installing a mudroom bench, purchasing wall coat hooks, weatherproof rubber mats and adding additional storage to keep scarves, hats and gloves handy but out of the way.
  4. Get Rid of Window Drafts. Winter time = gusty, chilly winds. Prevent drafts from chilling off your home (and increasing your energy bill) by weatherstripping and caulking windows, especially in older homes. Another way to eliminate drafts is by installing window shades, curtains or blinds.
  5. Get Your Heating System Serviced. There’s nothing worse than turning on your furnace that first chilly night of the season to find out it doesn’t work. Avoid this by scheduling your heating system’s annual check-up (cleaning and inspection). Ignoring this appointment can cause frustration and increase repair costs in the long run. Also, if you have a forced air heating system, make sure to replace the furnace filter now and regularly moving forward to keep the system in good working condition.
  6. Clean and Store Outdoor Furniture. Protect your outdoor furniture from the harsh winter elements. Give everything a good power steam cleaning and store away in your garage or Aaron Bros. storage unit for the season.
  7. Let Some Fresh Air In. Preparing your home for winter is all about getting ready to button down the hatches but before there’s too much chill in the air, open up the windows and doors to allow some fresh outdoor air into your house one last time.
  8. Test and Clean Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors. It’s always helpful to use the change of seasons as a friendly reminder for tasks we easily forget but need to remember. With the transition from fall to winter, replace the batteries in all the detectors and wipe clean of any dust so they continue to perform properly.
  9. Flip Your Mattress. Yet another task we easily forget but need to remember. When winter arrives, flip your mattress to avoid excessive wear and tear on the same side. If you have a pillowtop mattress, just turn the mattress 180 degrees.
  10. Reverse Your Ceiling Fans. Now that you have taken all the steps to prepare your home for winter and are ready to be nestled cozily into your home, there’s one more thing to make sure you stay warm. If you have ceiling fans in your home, once you are ready to turn on the heat, make sure your reverse the direction of your ceiling fan. Why? The direction your blades turn affects the result you receive. Make sure during the colder months that your fan is rotating clockwise – this produces an updraft and pushes down the rising heat into the room below.

Ready to start preparing your home for winter? Print out our Fall Home Cleaning Checklist, write down your tasks and get your home prepared for the winter cold!

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