Goodbye summer, hello fall! The heat streak is breaking and the fall breeze is whisking us away to our happy place. The leaves are changing, the morning air is crisp, and pumpkin spice is everywhere! But don’t let fall pass you by before taking care of some pre-winter checklist items.
Preparing for winter is an important step to make sure your home can withstand the harsh weather conditions Jack Frost might be bringing us this upcoming season. Some of the main focuses of your home will be entryways, windows, insulation, and gutters.
Cold weather, water, and ice infiltration can create tremendous damage to the frame of your house. If your windows, doors, and/ or siding is not properly insulated or maintained, the cold weather can create heat loss, increasing your utility bills.
What to check on first:
- Check the operation and all the weather-stripping on all of your windows and doors. Make sure there’s no air leaking or sunlight peeking through in unwanted areas; if you can see daylight around the reveals of your door while the door is closed, then you have air leaks that will cause heat loss.
- Have your gutters cleaned before the ice sets in.
- Address all of your perimeter insulation in your home:
- Sometimes overtime insulation tends to settle. When insulation becomes more compact, the less effective it becomes, which could create the need for additional insulation.
- Check the insulation at the end of the floor joist around the perimeter of the house.
- Caulk and insulate any penetrations, such as wires and pipes that may go through the wall.
Some repairs that may need to be made during the winter are cold air leaking around windows and doors, condensation in windows with single pane glass or solid aluminum framed windows, and high humidity causing condensation in your windows.
How to prevent these types of repairs before winter hits:
- Check the condition of all weather-stripping around windows and doors. Most of these can be easily replaced if any have shrunk or torn.
- Check if insulation in the attic is thick enough; the recommended insulation for the attic is R38 (roughly 12 inches thick).
- An easy solution is to lower the humidity level on your heating system.
Now is the time to inspect your windows, doors, and siding to see if any repairs or replacements have to be made.