When the Thermometer Dips

Fall in Texas occurs during the months of mid-October to November and the season is almost over for Texans. Winter starts in December and usually lasts up to February, January being the coldest month with temperatures ranging from 7°C (45°F) to 17°C (63°F) – which is still comfortable to many. And now is the right time to prepare your Texan homes because “winter is coming”.

To be winter-ready means to keep you warmer during the cold season. This way will also help the household in reducing energy consumption. Thus, saving money throughout the winter months. You will also be able to extend the life of your home’s systems and guaranty to eliminate safety hazards.

Here are some techniques to prepare your home in the cold weather months:

Air Leaks

While you are still under fall season, it is best to consider acquiring professional services to audit home’s energy. They will also be able to provide evaluation of window and door seals situations. You can also check yourself by holding a candle in front of a prospect draft. If the flame wavered in the draft, then you got yourself an air leak. For doors, you can install foam to a door that is leaking or cover with weather strip inside the doorframe. It is also advisable to get double pane windows as early as you can before winter. Double pane windows helps stabilize your home’s temperature. This means that you are able to reduce energy with double paned windows because their added insulation. The cheaper way to seal out drafts if you do not have double paned windows is by covering your windows with plastic.

Gutter Cleanup

Gutters, without a doubt, will be filled with leaves that have fallen from trees. If not maintained prior to winter season, damages may come about. If a homeowner is not able to get leaves and other debris out of the gutter, the channels will be block which may result to overflowing. If they overflow, the water will certainly run down your home resulting to sped-up home exterior deterioration. As for winter weather, stored water from blocked channels will become ice. As a result, gutters could tear away from your home because of the weight the ice adds to them.

Inspect Home System

Probably one of the most vital aspect to check on prior to the cold season is the home’s heating and air conditioning system. Before it gets freezing, make sure to have your HVAC system inspected by an HVAC contractor company. You must service your furnace regularly. In this way, you would be able to assess dilemmas that may occur before costly breakdowns. This technique will also lengthen the life of your furnace and will certainly persist in running in a way that it achieves maximum productivity with minimum wasted expense.

Wood Check

Another thing that needs protection on your home are the exterior wood trims. Painted wood trims adds elegance and warmth to your home. Essential aspect for the winter season. For rotted trims, you have the option of replacing them but it is not a cheap move. To prevent costly repairs, inspect wood trims in a yearly basis. Look over the caulk and paint. Reassure that the caulk is not cracked and apply new caulk if needed. Make sure also that the paint is not chipped and peeling away, otherwise apply new paint.

Water Tank Insulation

Is your water heater running accordingly? If not make sure to check on it and perform necessary actions to fix it for the cold days. Water heater should be flushed two times in a year and ideally, in advance of winter kickoff. Wrap the water heater in a blanket insulation to conserve fuel. Then set the temperature to 120 degrees.

Tree Clearing

Trees in your property sure increase the total property value. These greeneries also save energy and benefit the environment. But during the winter, they can be a burden. It is a good move to trim away branches of trees before it starts to get freezing. During fall season, assess if the trees around your property are still healthy so you can come to a decision whether to trim them or remove them out entirely because once a tree is no longer healthy and shows signs of fall on your home when it gets ice-coated during the winter, it can cause damages.

Double Check on Safety Detectors

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), home fires occur more in the winter than in any other season, and heating equipment is involved in one of every six reported home fires. Fire resulting to the utilization of heating equipment may be unavoidable so make sure to run a test on all of your smoke detectors. Furthermore, check on their battery life. You may also want to consider getting carbon monoxide detector in your home.

There are so much winter elements that you should look forward to that may bring real damage to your home. You are probably not over with the recent Halloween or still enjoying fall to think of winterizing. But as early as you can, take time to do all the possible things you can do to be fully prepared for the winter elements that may come your way when the thermometer plunges.

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