With cold temperatures on the horizon, follow these steps from Zillow to help prep your home for winter weather and ward off any potential damage such as frozen pipes or water damage from melting ice. The other upside to winterizing? You’ll most likely trim down your energy bills. Post-holiday savings? Yes, please!
Inside the Home
- Schedule an energy audit with your electric and/or gas company to identify any inefficiencies that may be contributing to higher heating bills.
- Change your furnace filters more often (monthly in winter months, if possible) to reduce energy demand and improve airflow. HEPA filters can be changed or cleaned every two months.
- Insulate exposed pipes with foam-rubber insulation to prevent pipes from freezing.
- Ceiling fans: Set fan blades to rotate clockwise to spread warm air back down into the room.
- Installing a Smart Thermostat (like the Nest thermostat) can help save money on energy bills by regulating temperature based on what room you are in, allowing you to adjust indoor temperatures while away from home.
- Flush your water heater to clear any built-up sediment and then wrap it with an insulation blanket to keep heat from escaping.
Outside the Home
- Fill cracks in the foundation to prevent heat leaks.
- Have your chimney cleaned and inspected by a professional and fix any problems.
- Clean gutters and install an ice shield on the roof to prevent build up of ice and snow, which can impede draining.
- Trim back branches that may be hanging over your rooftop or power lines. Weighted branches can snap and cause damage.
- Remove any window-unit air conditioners and seal windows shut. Cold air can seep through cracks.