Bill Dafnis

Broker, ABR, SFR

Tips to Help You Winter Proof Your Home


Wet weather, colder days and the threat of the big chill means homeowners are truly gearing up for winter. If you haven't already done so, now would be a good time to get you and your home ready for the colder months ahead. Here are some tips to keep the heat in and the cold out.

1. Check your gutters - Why bother cleaning your gutters? Put simply, clean gutters should help eliminate the risk of rainwater clogging downspouts, which if left unattended may cause water damage to your roof. While this might not be the most glamorous job you'll ever do, in the long run, your home will thank you!

This is a job for two people as you'll more than likely need to use a ladder to reach your gutters. When cleaning your gutters, wear sensible footwear and be sure to ask someone to hold the ladder to keep you secure while you actually clean your gutters. Remember to wear gloves when removing debris, dirt and leaves from your gutters. If you can, use a bucket secured to your ladder to put everything you remove into.

2. Keep the heat in - While winter is one of our most beautiful seasons, the cold weather really can play havoc and make it hard for people to stay warm in their homes. Before you reach for the thermostat, try implementing some simple yet effective measures to help keep you warm.

• Have you got blinds in your home? If so, be sure to close them to keep the warmth in and the cold out as the nights draw in. It might be worth investing in some heavy weight curtains, too, so that you can stop the heat from escaping.

• Draft excluders are a relatively inexpensive way to keep the heat in too. Place them against doors in your home where you feel the biggest chills to help keep your rooms snug on winter evenings. Have you got any gaps around your doors or flooring? If so, get a sealant from your local DIY store and seal them before the cold weather really kicks in. Over winter, you're likely to be turning your heating up and the last thing you want to do is let all of it escape.

3. Bleed your radiators
- This should be quite a simple job to complete and shouldn't take up too much of your time either. Bleeding a radiator simply means releasing trapped air from your radiator. Turn off your central heating to stop air entering your system. Find your bleed valve and place an old towel underneath it to catch any water that comes out of your radiator. It's worth putting something around your hands, too, as the water that comes out may be hot. Use your radiator key by inserting it into the valve and turn it counter-clockwise. The air will start to come out of your radiator and when water starts to trickle out of your radiator the job is complete. All that's left for you to do is replace and tighten the bleed valve and turn your central heating back on. Job done!

4. Enjoy some 'me' time - It's cold, it's raining and you really don't like venturing out in the cold weather. Winter can be tough, not only for your home, but for you too. So, when prepping your home for winter think of little ways you can get the most out of this season. The cold weather can sometimes make you susceptible to colds, so try to eat healthy to help keep colds at bay. Are you into your fitness? Whether you are a fitness fanatic or just venturing into the world of exercise, it's always worth trying to stay active so that you can enjoy not only a fit winter, but a healthy one too.

Source: HomeServe

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2013. All rights reserved.

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