If you have lived through a winter in New England, you know that the weather that time of year can be very harsh. If you want to go outside you have to get bundled up; hats, gloves, and scarves are a must. It’s important to keep in mind that New England winters are not easy on your home either, so we’re going to share some tips on home maintenance during winters in New England.
Make Sure Your Heating System Is in Tip Top Shape
Your home is supposed to be the place that protects you from the harsh elements, so make sure that the heater is in proper working order before the weather gets unbearably cold. It’s even a good idea to have your heating system professionally inspected once in a while to make sure that it will work for you when you need it most.
If you have a fireplace or wood-burning stove, it’s a good idea to have your chimney cleaned before winter time and make sure that these alternative heat sources are in good working order.
Check Your Roof
Your roof is a part of your house that never gets a break. It has to endure the damaging rays of the sun during the summertime and the rain, snow, sleet and hail in the wintertime. Being exposed to the elements 24 hours a day can take its toll so make sure your roof is in good shape before the weather gets bad.
Make Sure Your House Is Well Insulated
Your heater is already going to be working harder during the winter, but if your house is not well insulated, the heater might not be able to keep up. It’s a good idea to add some extra insulation in your attic to prevent ice dams.
When too much heat escapes from your house and makes its way into the attic, it will melt the ice and snow on the roof. When that water refreezes it can cause what is known as an ice dam which can lead to water damage or even severely damage your roof.
Check Your Plumbing
When temperatures start to drop in the wintertime, any water left in your pipes can freeze. Because water expands when it freezes, it can actually burst your pipes and create a tremendous amount of damage. If you’re using your water on a regular basis, the water flowing through the pipes should prevent that from happening. If you’re going to be away from home for any length of time, you can prevent this type of damage by using products like pipe sleeves, heat tape, or heat cable.
Some Outdoor Maintenance Tips
During the winter, the space around your house is going to need some attention as well. You’ll have to be prepared to clear snow and ice from driveways and walkways. A shovel and some elbow grease can do the job, but you may want to consider investing in a small snow plow or even hiring someone who performs a snow removal service.
You’ll also want to clean your gutters before the bad weather comes. Make sure there are no leaves and twigs clogging up your gutters and make sure your downspouts direct water away from your house. It’s also a good idea to make sure any handrails are in good condition to prevent someone from slipping and falling when walkways or staircases are wet or icy.