We never know what’s going to hit us with a New England winter. One year may be milder and the next could be pretty tough. Either way, it a good idea to be prepared ahead of time when possible, so Flannery’s Handymen thought we could share a few more tips to get ready for winter.
Outside the house
There are some things you should do outside of the house in addition to the things you will do inside. Cleaning your gutters is one of them, of course, but there are a few other things that can be easy to forget.
Check the roof
It’s always a good idea to see what kind of shape your roof is in before winter comes along. You don’t necessarily need to get up there and crawl around, but grab some binoculars and take a walk around the house looking up at the roof. Check for missing or dangling shingles or small openings. If you notice any of those things, you probably want to call somebody in to patch things up before the bad weather sets in and you get some leaking. If you have a flat roof, it might be a good idea to check for any organic debris that has fallen and could absorb or hold moisture and clean that off.
Take care of your outdoor furniture
Make sure to remove and pack up all the exterior cushions and pillows from your patio or lawn furniture. Harsh weather can do a job on the fabrics and make them look old and dingy. If there’s room in a garage, it’s even better if you can move and store the furniture in there where it is covered and protected from the elements.
Drain outdoor faucets and hoses
Water left to sit in hoses or pipes can freeze once the cold weather moves in. Frozen water expands and causes pipes and hoses to crack or burst. Making sure they are empty and turned off can make a big difference as the season progresses.
Tips for keeping warm
- Reset your ceiling fans to turn clockwise. Changing the direction will help push the warm air back down toward you rather than letting it rise and escape
- Make sure to have your system checked and filters cleaned or replaced. You’ll sleep easier if you know things are running smoothly. Nobody wants to be that person wrapped in blankets waiting for a service call.
- Put aluminum foil or sheets behind radiators. It may sound weird, but doing this will reflect the heat back out toward the room.
- Close the fireplace damper. Lots of people forget this after having used their fireplace for the evening, but neglecting to close the damper later will allow all your heat to escape right up and out through your chimney.
- Use your windows to your advantage. On bright, sunny days make sure the curtains on southern-facing windows are open during the day to let some natural light –and heat- into the house. On other windows and in the evening, make sure you have heavier window treatments and keep them closed to hold the heat in the house.
Employing some of these tips may help you out in the long run. If there are any tasks you need help with. Contact us here and we can talk about how we might be able to help you out.