|Furnace Tune Up
Go and prepare to turn your heating on. Make sure you do this test before it becomes cold as it will give you time to get anything fixed if required. Once on leave it on for 1 hour and listen to the motor and listen for any noises. Call an HVAC and Furnace professional for an annual tune up.
Clean The Chimney
Cycle the use of chimney cleaning logs with natural wood cuts down on required cleaning. Buy a chimney cleaning rod and clean your own when need be or hire a professional.
Tips to know if your chimney is in need of a cleaning
Burned wood odours coming from the fireplace when it's not being used. Fires that seem to burn poorly or that dump a bunch of smoke into the room. A black damper. Since it sits right above the firebox, the damper is often the easiest thing to see and reach. And it gets caked with creosote. Look or reach inside, and see what you can find. If you see black gunk or you can pull out chunks of the stuff, there's a good amount of creosote built up inside.
Seal All Doors And Windows
Room by room light candles and see if a draft makes them flicker. This old school technique works as the flame of a candle is quite sensitive. Try to find any draft and seal them with silicone. If there are generally cold areas this could be a lack of insulation from improper building. In this case you may want to consider having a contractor by and assessing either new or more insulation or new windows.
Inspect Roof Gutters And Downspouts
Flooding frequently happens in mid winter or spring when there is a warm spell and high volumes of water melt suddenly while the down spouts and drains are plugged with debris and or frozen. To avoid this check all spouts and drain holes in the mid and late fall to make sure they are clear and ready. Also a good proactive measure is to actively look at them in the winter or especially on melting days. This will greatly decrease damage to foundations and avoid insurance claims.
Put Away, Service And Winterize Tools
Drain all your mowers and gas tools and lubricate them for winter storage. You can even lightly sand down any damaged or scratched metal on tools and give them a light coat of paint or rub of oil. This is how my grandfather did it and why our family has his tools still 50 years later.
Foundation Examination And Damage Prevention
Inspect the foundation of your house every Fall and Spring. Water damage is typically the key culprit. If you nip the problem in the bud you can save tens of thousands in repair. One the best preventative measures is to work backwards and assume your drain pipes will be frozen and slope your landscape away from your home.
Check All Smoke, Radon and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
For everyone’s health and your own please make sure all your detectors have fresh batteries and also do a test by depressing the test button to make sure the sound warning is working.
Check All Plumbing
Make sure all your pipes are in good order and not leaking or collecting condensation. Both can cause a rupture and or create a frozen pipe. Drain all your outdoor hoses and put them away to increase their lifespan. Now, go looking for any pipes that aren't insulated, or that pass through an unheated space. This includes pipes that run through crawlspaces, basements or garages. Wrap them with pre-molded foam rubber sleeves or fibreglass insulation, available at any hardware stores. If you're really concerned about a pipe freezing, you can first wrap it with thermostat controlled pipe heat wrapping which keeps the pipes at 15 degrees Celsius or 59 Fahrenheit. ** note the pipe heaters do not work in a power failure so should be used in conjunction with insulation. **
Prepare Tree And Shrubs And All Landscaping
Do all your pruning in either the fall or spring. The fall give you the advantage of cutting back branches that could snap due to snow load.
Emergency Supplies And First Aid Kit Check
Set aside emergency canned food 2 to 3 days plus extra hats, gloves and warm blankets and any thing children or seniors may need. This may seem like over kill but if you need it, you will be sitting on your cold house warm and not overly agitated while the power outage or situation is dealt with, by the fire, police and government.
See Kathy Wilson on TopInsurancePeople.com a product of ManagedBranding.com