I live in an old house. On a good day, it has its issues that we have learned to live with like an occasional steam pipe knocking when the heat comes on. In a new home, there are fewer quirky elements to go wrong but preparing for winter still requires maintenance. Here are a few things we do to prepare for winter. Over the years I have found that it is better to get a professional to do the work even if I can manage the task. They are more efficient and knowledgeable than I will ever be.
- Clean the gutters and downspouts. As the leaves fall, they can clog up the works and cause an ice buildup. Some of our clients refuse to have gutters for this reason.
- Check and replace weather strips on doors and windows as required. Those items over time wear and are damaged through use and therefore stop being effective at keeping out the cold.
- Have a professional service your mechanical systems including the boiler, filters, and anything else that requires maintenance.
- A chimney sweep should clean your fireplaces and chimneys every year and inspect the smoke chamber. This is especially important for older homes.
- Winterize pools, hot tubs, and accessory buildings. A heated outbuilding with running water needs the same care as a home.
6. Clean out the basement and rodent-proof the foundation. (Not an easy task for a 200-year-old stone foundation.)
7. Check batteries in smoke detectors and replace them as required. If you have dampness alarms under washing machines or AC blowers, check them too.
8. Check and service your home generator.
9. Inspect your attic for leaks, rodent damage, and our favorite stowaways, bats.
10. Exchange your screens for storm panels on windows and 3 season porches.
Photos by Rob Karosis Curated Brochure: Portfolio