How to Winterize my Home?

How do you winterize your home? Cold Temperatures can wreak havoc on our beloved homes. Here are some tips to help winterize yours!

Whether you live in Lexington, South Carolina, Columbia, Irmo, Greenville, Charleston, or Charlotte, the following the tips on how to Winterize Your Home can help you keep your home warm, combat high utility bills, and avoid potential claim situations in the winter months:

  1. Clean your gutters so winter’s rain and melting snow can drain.
  2. Keep your attic well-ventilated and insulated to minimize the amount of heat rising through the attic from within the house and to help avoid roof freezing.
  3. Block those leaks.  To find your leaks, you can walk around the inside of your home on a breezy day and hold a lit incense stick to locate the most common drafty areas (ie. recessed lighting, window & door frames, electrical outlets).
  4. Insulate yourself.  You should have a minimum of 12 inches of insulation in your attic.  If you are going to layer insulation on top of each other, do not use the kind that has a paper backing.  It will act as a vapor barrier and can cause moisture problems in the insulation.
  5. Check your furnace.  Turn it on and see if it is working before the coldest weather comes.  In the winter you should change the furnace filters regularly to help with efficiency and air flow.
  6. Check your duct work and make sure they are well connected.
  7. Check your windows.  If you have storm windows go ahead and put them up.  If you don’t have storm windows and your current windows are leaky or drafty, start to replace them a few at a time or buy a window insulator kit to help out.
  8. Have your chimney inspected before using your fireplace.
  9. Reverse the fan in your home.  When you reverse the direction from the summer operation, the fan pushes the warm air down and forces it to recirculate.  The blades should be turning clockwise.
  10. Wrap your pipes to help them from freezing.  Frozen water in pipes can cause water pressure buildup between the ice blockage and the closed faucet at the end of a pipe, which can lead to pipes bursting.
  11. To keep water in pipes from freezing, take the following steps:

i.      Fit exposed pipes with insulation sleeves or wrap to slow the heat transfer.

ii.      Seal cracks and holes in outside walls and foundations
near water pipes with caulking.

iii.      Keep a slow trickle of water flowing through faucets connected to pipes that run through unheated or unprotected spaces.

12. Finally, Check your alarms and fire extinguishers.  Smoke detectors should be replaced every 10 years.  If you do not have a carbon-monoxide detector, you should purchase one.

Use these tips above to winterize your home so that you can enjoy the winter by a cozy fire with your loved ones!