Now it's cold!- What is your home thinking?
Quick, no cost ways to winterize your home.
By: EFynch.comWell hello! Just like a thrown cup of cold water in the shower, the cold wind jolted me awake this morning while walking my dog at 5:30am.
Winter has descended on Maryland with a fury and it seems like just last week you could stroll around Baltimore with a light jacket.
If you haven't done so yet- you really need to make sure your home is winterized ASAP.
We surveyed Pros and Seasoned Homeowners for this one. Below are the most common tips to do immediately which all are NO COST:
Homeowner To Do List:
1. Winterize outdoor Faucets. (30 second video here)
2. Inspect roof and gutters (look for water pooling, leaks, damage) from both the outside and from inside your attic. *even if you had them cleaned, try to give it a quick look.
3. Winterize outdoor equipment: (power equipment and HVAC)*
4. Test and/ or get repairs to snowblowers now (not in January).*
5. Check smoke and C02 alarms and batteries.*
6. Put insulation inside or over-top of attic stairs/ access points.
7. If you have a sink or faucet with pipes on an exterior walls- open the cabinet doors underneath to allow warm air circulation. Consider keeping the faucet on a light drip. Check regularly to make sure water is running and not frozen.
8. Check to make sure all windows are closed and LOCKED- securely and tightly closed.
9. Even with a gas fireplace- make sure the fireplace flu is open and test surrounding CO2 alarms.
10. Check forced air vents to make sure they are all open. Unlike summer heat- you do not really want unused rooms getting too cold as this can cause frozen pipes even in neighboring rooms (see #5 below).
1. When winterizing outdoor HVAC equipment (not for Heat Pumps)- DO NOT cover the sides as this can trap moisture and cause rust. Just cover the top and securely fasten.
2. When winterizing power equipment, add a fuel saver to the gas tank. Close the gas valve on the bottom of the tank (small engines only), then run the engine until it cuts out (emptying the gas line from fuel). Check oil, grease, spray blades with a rust prevented (i.e. WD-40). RUN EQUIPMENT OUTDOORS TO PREVENT HARMFUL GAS FROM ACCUMULATING INSIDE YOUR HOME/ GARAGE.
3. A Smoke and CO2 alarm should at least be on every floor. Check Batteries. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE AN ALARM you can purchase a battery operated one from all Hardware Stores and even some local Pharmacies. You can also contact and get a free alarm from most local governments (call 611 in Baltimore City).
4. If a frozen pipe has been found cut the water to that pipe immediately- do you best to locate the area that is frozen. Open the faucet to release pressure and determine whether or not the pipe has ruptured, only then consider thawing. IF UNSURE, CONTACT A PLUMBER IMMEDIATELY. Paying for a service call is much cheaper than repairing water damage.
5. Although your rooms are separated by doors and walls, the inside of your walls (especially interior walls) are sometimes poorly or not insulated and cold air can transfer from one room to another. Most interior walls are nothing more than Gypsum Board (Sheetrock) and wooden 2 x 4's. Cold air can freely move around transferring heat (or lack of heat) from one room to another. In the case of the spare room which you closed off during the summer, make sure those vents are open, allowing heat to still circulate into that room. You can still keep the doors closed and allow the temperature to drop in that room, but even having minimal heat can save energy and protect other rooms and plumbing.
Just for FUN- in 2008 EFynch.com Co-Founder climbed Mt. Washington, New Hampshire. This mountain is notorious for holding the highest recorded ground wind speed for many years (231mph). When EFynch Co-Founder, Teris Pantazes, took this video- it was -20 with an 80 mph wind. Doesn't feel too far off from today! Click Here for the video.
EFynch.com is a Maryland Based Software Company that also supports the Homeowner Community. More information can be found at FYNCHNEST.
Based in Baltimore City, EFynch provides the information above or conversation purposes only and this posting (and all postings on this blog) are designed for entertainment and conversation purposes only. The information contained is not the opinion of EFynch but instead is written as the personal opinion of it's author. If you are unsure of the topics described above or have on prior knowledge of the information, it is highly recommended you contact your local handyman, plumber, electrician, landscaper, roofer, or a qualified home professional. Some of these tasks involve risk and should not be undertaken by a non-proffesional or licensed person. If you decide to act on the information contained here, you agree to hold EFynch.com and the author harmless.
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