How to winterize your home

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Winter is here, and you need to protect your home from the cold. Even snowbirds will need to ensure their homes are protected while they are away. Here are some tips for home winterization for snowbirds and those who chose to stay during the winter.

• Remove any dead tree limbs that are hanging on top of your house or car. During winter these branches can fall on the roof of the house or car or passersby and cause serious damage.

• Whether you will be around or not, your plumbing can be strong enough to handle the winter season and be well adapted to freezing and thawing. Plumbing systems that are not taken care of end up bursting during winter and can cause water damage or provide favorable ground for the growth of mold. To ensure this does not happen, shut off the water supply to outdoor systems and ensure there is no moisture left in the systems. Take care of the air-conditioned by covering the outdoor parts.

• Inspect the house and seal off any gaps and spaces. Pay close attention to your roof and inspect your openings ensuring they are well covered.

• For those staying in during winter, ensure your chimney is clean especially if you plan on using it over the winter. Call a chimney sweep and have them inspect and clean out your chimney to remove any soot and harmful debris.

• Ensure that air circulates in the house. There is a difference between keeping warm and breathing contaminated air. If air does not have an outlet, people will keep breathing the same air, and it is not healthy. Still, in the subject of clean and safe air to breathe, you can have a radon test conducted on the air in the house. Radon is a dangerous gas that cannot be detected without doing tests. If you find high levels of radon in the house, you can work with a radon expert to reduce the levels.

• Before the winter sets in, ensure carbon monoxide detectors are functional. Inspect the furnace to ensure your cooking and heating system are safe and efficient. Ensure your burners are adjusted to produce a blue flame that has less carbon monoxide emissions.

• You can install storm windows and doors that will come in handy when strong winds begin blowing. Ensure they are secured shut by installing them appropriately or calling a professional to do it.

• Before winter starts, ensure you have inspected your heating system to ensure it is working for you.

• Those who will not be home should ensure there is someone checking up on their home and will be checking all the systems. Having the house occupied will provide some security since people will not have an opportunity to rob the place. The house systems will regularly be inspected, and any mishaps will be dealt with before they escalate.

During the winter season, you and the house should keep warm. One way of ensuring this happens is by making sure the house is warm. Once your home is set, you can be sure that you will survive the winter. As for snowbirds, they will have a warm home waiting when they return.