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5 Tips for How to Prepare Your Home for a Harsh Winter
The trusty Farmer’s Almanac predicts this winter will be colder in most of the eastern two-thirds of the US. AccuWeather is predicting that La Nina will impact the nation with persistent cold, and heavy snowfall in the north east. This means that if you’re a home owner it’s time to prepare your home for the harsh winter ahead. Even if it’s not a particularly cold or snowy year, these tips will help keep you and your family safe, warm, and help to save on your energy costs.
According to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), over 20 percent of northeast households use heating oil as their primary fuel for heat. The EIA also states that northeast homeowners will spend around $1,400 for their heating oil during the winter.
Our Top Tips to Prepare for a Harsh Winter
Preparing for a harsh winter should be completed before the nasty winter weather is upon us. It’s much easier to prepare for winter BEFORE it starts, so the time is now to prepare your home.
- Get a Furnace Tune Up
Most top heating oil companies perform tune-ups for your heating system annually. Many combine your tune-up with a 24/7 service contract for one affordable price. You can learn more about Petro Home Services heating system tune ups and schedule yours today.
- Take Steps to Prevent Ice Dams
Ice dam prevention is one of the most important things you should to ready for winter. This involves cleaning your gutters of leaves and other debris, and making sure your gutter system is intact. The best way to prevent ice dams is to keep the water flowing as moving water tends not to freeze. If your gutters are blocked, rainwater and melting snow form ice dams if the weather conditions are right.
- Seal Your Windows and Doors to Keep Heat Inside
Heating your home can be costly if your windows and doors are letting heat escape in winter. It is relatively inexpensive to seal your windows and doors. If you’re semi-handy, you can even make this a DIY project. Depending on the number of windows and doors in your home, this project will not take long or be expensive.
- Turn off Outside Faucets to Avoid Frozen Pipes
When it’s cold, unless some of your interior piping is in a cold spot, there is little chance of your interior pipes freezing, but your outside faucets are another matter. You should turn off your outside faucets when subfreezing weather arrives. Because of the fact that the faucets are outside, they could be subject to freezing if there is any water in the line. Turning off the source of water (typically with a “shutoff” near the faucet’s entry point into the house) should minimize or eliminate the risk of pipes freezing or bursting.
- Have a Chimney Sweep Clean Your Chimney
A chimney loaded with creosote is not just a nuisance, it’s dangerous for you and your family if you do not hire a chimney cleaning service as it could be a breeding ground for fires. The blockage could also cause blowback of fireplace smoke if the buildup is severe.