12 Tips for Winterizing Your Home

Winter is no joke for your home - especially when you take into account all of the aspects that can affect it. Your home was built to stand the test of time, but with freezing temperatures and large snowfalls - it needs a little help from you! The Mike MacGuire team takes great pride in helping you find the best real estate in Colorado Springs, but now we want to help you maintain it as well. Here are 12 things you should remember to do before we get too deep into winter.

Check the Chimney
Did you know that before you light up your fireplace, you should have it cleaned and inspected? This is a relatively simple task with great rewards. A fireplace that is malfunctioning or dirty can cause big problems for your home. Sometimes it's as simple as it just not heating up, but other times it can be disastrous.

Lower the Temps
While you may be tempted to adjust your thermostat to the highest temperature to keep warm - you may be surprised when you get your electric bill. Save utility costs on your home by keeping the thermostat in the lower 70s or upper 60s.

Shut Off Exterior Water
Frozen pipes are no laughing matter, and if you've ever experienced it, you know how hard it can be to repair the issue if the burst. Do yourself a huge favor and shut the water off to the spigots and clear the lines out.

Reverse Your Fans
Did you know that if you reverse the direction of your ceiling fan, it will help make your space warmer? If you want to redistribute the warm air in a room, make sure that your fan blades are going clockwise.

Hire an HVAC Technician
You heating system in a finely tuned machine used to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. When one piece isn't working, though, you can find the house getting cold quickly. Have an HVAC technician come inspect your home and make sure everything is working as it should. This can help eliminate surprises in the middle of the winter.

Check Smoke Alarms
While you want to check your alarms every season, winter can be especially important. With the constant use of heaters, more lights in the evening, and even Christmas lights, the chances for accidents goes up. If your alarms work properly, it can help reduce the damage by increasing your reaction time.

Are You Insulated?
Your ceilings, walls, and maybe even floors can all be insulated, and if they aren't, you'll probably notice the difference when they are. Insulation helps to lock in the heat, so if you want to cut costs on utilities, that's a good place to start.

Lower the Water Heater
Reduce hot water temperature. Set your water heater to the "normal" setting or 120-degrees Fahrenheit, unless the owner's manual for your dishwasher requires a higher setting. The savings are 7-11 percent of water heating costs - it's an easy way to make an impact on your winter utility bill.

Inspect Your Windows and Doors
If the windows and doors of your home aren't properly sealed, it's similar to throwing them open and tossing cash out to the wind. When you have good seals, you can keep more heat in your home and this can help your utility bill.

Winterize Your Lawn Equipment
You won't need your lawn maintenance equipment for a few months now! Winterizing things like your mower and weed eater can keep them in good condition, make them last longer, and also keep rodents and pests from building nests inside.

Clean Your Gutters
The fall season always brings some extra maintenance with the leaves. Take some time while you're putting up your Christmas lights to clean out the gutters. By not cleaning them, water can build up inside, freeze, and then cause ice dams or damage.

Mulch Your Leaves
Finally, make good use of those leaves in your yard and mulch them for your garden. Leaving them on your lawn will encourage mold and diseases to flourish, causing you more work in the spring.

Caring for Your Colorado Springs Home
While owning your home comes with many benefits, it can also come with some extra work. Take some time now to prepare your home for winter. In just a day or two, you'll have everything checked off and be set up for success through the 2016/2017 winter season. Whether you're a brand new homeowner, or a seasoned veteran - we hope these tips will give you and idea of what you can do to keep your real estate investment in good shape through the season.

Mike MacGuire
Colorado Springs Real Estate Agent

The MacGuire Team
6760 Corporate Dr
Ste 300
Colorado Springs, CO 80919

719-536-4324 or 719-660-6793



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