Yesterday, my dad and I went to our family cottage in Dartmouth on a Lake, to winterize, and we’re happy we did because we’ll be seeing temps as low as 22 degrees tonight!
Our trip inspired me to compile a list of prepping a house for winter.
Get your fireplace ready:
Screen top of chimney to prevent rodents and birds from coming in.
If your chimney hasn’t been cleaned for a long time, call a sweep to remove soot and creosote.
Chop or buy firewood and store in a dry place away from the exterior of your home.
Make sure to check that the damper closes and opens correctly.
Check the exterior of your house:
Use weather stripping around doors to prevent cold air from blasting in and caulk windows to keep your home cozy.
Replace any windows with cracked glass, you’ll certainly wish you had on these freezing New England nights.
Install storm windows and at the very least, replace summer screens with glass replacements you may have in storage.
Consider adding extra insulation to the attic, preventing warm air from creeping toward your roof – causing ice dams when we get the snow.
Check flashings to make sure water can’t get inside.
Replace any worn out or broken roofing shingles.
PS check where the downspouts end, when you see a lot of slate granules it means they’re separating from the shingles, they’ve outlived their useful life.Time for a new roof. Mike
Clean gutters and use a hose to clear downspouts.
Rake away debris from foundation.
Walk the perimeter of your house and check for cracks to seal, preventing small animals from taking shelter, (mice can slip through a space as thin as a dime).
Prep Weather-Specific Equipment:
Store gardening equipment.
Drain gas from lawnmower.
Make sure your snow blower is ready to go.
Buy bags of sand and ice melt.
PS I like to get new shovels for each rental house, spray paint the # on the shovel;-) Mike
PPS then of course get snow melt & sand (for concrete or mortared brick walkways).
Prevent Pipes from Freezing:
Make sure you know where your water main is, in case of an emergency.
Drain every garden hose.
Leave your heat set to at least 55 degrees if you go on vacation.
Cut down branches that could fall onto your home or electrical wires.
Consider pruning trees to avoid winter injury.
Plant spring bulbs and remove bulbs that cannot winter over (like dahlias).
Always have an emergency kit handy:
Stock up on candles and matches in case there’s a power outage.
Find phone numbers for utility companies and tape them near your phone.
Store non-perishable food supplies, blankets and bottled water.