Get Your Home Ready For Winter
The leaves are changing color, and the weather is getting colder - it's officially wintertime! While this season can be beautiful and full of cheer, the change in weather can also bring about a set of unique challenges for homeowners.
That's why AWS Plumbing, Heating & Cooling put together this winter home maintenance checklist to help you get your home prepared. Keep this list handy and try your best to complete these tasks before winter hits — then you'll be able to relax and enjoy the holidays without worrying about the state of your home!
1. Schedule a Furnace Tune-Up
The last thing you want is for your furnace to break down in the middle of a cold winter night! Make sure to schedule an annual tune-up this time of year. Our technicians will take a look at your HVAC, assess and repair any issues, and give it a good clean for the long heating season ahead.
If your system has been continuously breaking down or is over 15 years old, we may recommend scheduling a replacement before the coldest days of the year are here. This will improve your home’s comfort, increase efficiency, and improve your indoor air quality.
2. Change Your Air Filters
Regularly changing your air filters can have a big impact on your home's heating efficiency as well as the quality of your indoor air. Make sure to check and replace them every one to three months throughout the winter season.
3. Flush The Water Heater
Over time, sediment will begin to build up in your water heater and begin causing problems. Flushing your water heater every so often will keep these issues to a minimum and can help improve efficiency and extend its lifespan. Make sure to do this at least once a year, preferably before the winter when you'll be using hot water more frequently for showers and laundry.
4. Check Your Windows and Doors
Drafty windows or doors can lead to a significant loss in heat, causing your energy bills to skyrocket. Inspect all of the windows and doors in your home for air leaks and gaps, and seal them with caulk or weatherstripping if necessary.
5. Winterize Your Plumbing
One common winter plumbing problem many homeowners have faced is frozen pipes. As the weather changes, pipes that are not insulated properly can freeze. The change in pressure can place added stress on these pipes, causing them to burst.
Burst pipes can result in serious water damage and costly repairs. Winterizing your plumbing involves taking steps like insulating exposed pipes, disconnecting outdoor hoses, and leaving cabinet doors open to allow warm air to circulate around pipes in kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
Learn more about how to prepare your plumbing for the winter months by contacting our team!
6. Inspect Your Roof
Winter weather can wreak havoc on roofs, so make sure yours is up for the challenge by having it inspected. Look for any missing or damaged shingles, and make sure to patch up any holes or cracks to prevent leaks.
We also recommend taking time to clean your gutters. This will allow for proper drainage and prevent ice build-up and blockages.
7. Check Your Insulation
Another way to ensure your home stays warm (and your energy bills stay low!) is by making sure you have adequate insulation in the attic and walls. If not, consider adding or replacing where necessary. This will go a long way in keeping your home comfortable year-round.
8. Install New Fixtures
This winter is a great time to install new fixtures in your home. This could include something as small as a low-flow showerhead or as large as a tankless water heater! Now is the time to make yourself more comfortable in your home with the help of the following:
- An air purification system
- A high-efficiency furnace
- Low-flow plumbing products
- Water purification solutions
- New, better-insulated pipes
- And more!
Our team is here to help you find the right fixtures and provide proper installation this winter!
9. Finish Up Remodeling Projects
If you have any remodeling projects that are already underway, now is the time to finish them up before the cold winter days set in. This could include anything from adding a new deck or patio to fully renovating your kitchen and bathroom.
Don't let those unfinished home improvement tasks linger - give us a call and we'll help turn your dream space into a reality before the holiday season is here.
10. Prepare Your Outdoor Spaces
Don't forget about your outdoor spaces! These areas will require a little care this winter as well. Be sure to:
- Winterize any sprinkler systems
- Drain and store hoses and outdoor faucets
- Clean and cover grills
- Trim trees or shrubs that could potentially damage power lines during snowfall
- Secure or store outdoor furniture and decorations.
11. Check Your Detectors
The holiday season often includes the use of fireplaces, candles, and other potential fire hazards. Make sure your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in proper working order, changing the batteries if necessary to keep you and your family safe during the winter months.
12. Get Ready for Guests
Are you expecting visitors during the holidays? Now is a good time to conduct a deep clean of your home, including carpets and upholstery. Give the guest bathroom a good scrub, including the drains, showerheads, and toilets!
Also, consider the functionality of your guest room or potential sleeping areas - add extra blankets, pillows, and towels for their comfort.
13. Prepare for Power Outages
Winter weather can also bring about power outages. Make sure you have candles, flashlights, and batteries on hand, as well as a backup source of heat if necessary. It's also smart to keep some bottled water and non-perishable food items in case of extended power outages. You may also want to consider getting a backup generator as an added safety feature.
14. Schedule Home Repairs
It's time to finally call AWS Plumbing, Heating & Cooling about that leaking faucet, slow-draining tub, and faulty thermostat! We know how easy it can be to put off scheduling home repairs, but the longer you allow these issues to go unsolved, the worse the problems can become. Give our team a call to take care of all your plumbing and HVAC repairs.
15. Utilize Your Ceiling Fans
Heat rises, meaning a lot of that warm air from your furnace is going straight up! Push this air back down with the help of your ceiling fan. Simply reverse the direction of the fan so that it is running clockwise — just be sure to switch them back in the spring.
Contact AWS Today!
As we head into the winter season, don’t forget that the AWS Plumbing, Heating & Cooling team is here when you need us most. Whether the heat goes out, you have a burst pipe on your hands, or you’re in need of a furnace tune-up, we’ve got you covered.
Contact us online or give us a call at (516) 217-2196 for answers to your questions and to schedule your next appointment today!