We hope you had a good and safe Halloween this year!
The weather may have warmed up at the beginning of November in Calgary, but you know it’s going to drop back down soon and get really cold. Before everything completely freezes over, it’s a good idea to go through your winter readiness checklist for your home.
If you don’t have a winter checklist handy, that’s fine because we have one right here!
- Clean or replace your furnace filter from last winter and monitor it throughout the heating season to see if it needs further cleaning or replacement.
- Check ventilation systems, like heat recovery ventilator filters, every two months for cleaning or replacement.
- Drain a small amount of water out of your hot water tank via the clean-out valve at the bottom to help control sediment and maintain its efficiency. (Consult your owner’s manual first if you’re unfamiliar with how to do this.)
- Clean your humidifier before you start using it if you haven’t cleaned it since last winter. Clean it once per month during winter.
- Vacuum: bathroom exhaust fans, fire and smoke detectors, radiator grills on refrigerators and freezers. Also, empty drip trays on fridges and freezers.
- Check fire extinguisher gauges and recharge or replace them if necessary.
- Check and update your fire escape routes, including the door and window hardware. Make sure your family knows the fire escape routes.
- Check to make sure there is adequate lighting on your home’s exterior.
- Check your basement’s floor drain to make sure the trap has water. Refill if necessary.
- Keep an eye on the moisture levels in your home and take corrective action if they are problematic. Too much condensation on your windows can cause damage over time and pose serious health problems. Frozen windows can also hamper fire escape routes.
- Inspect faucets for indications of dripping and replace washers if necessary.
- If you have a sink, tub or shower that isn’t used frequently, briefly run some water in it to keep water in the trap.
- Clean drains in your sinks, tubs, showers and dishwasher.
- Test plumbing shut-off valves to make sure they are working properly and to prevent them from seizing.
- Inspect windows and doors for ice or leaks and if you find any, make a note to repair them in spring.
- Inspect your attic to see if there is any frost accumulation. Check your roof for ice dams or icicles. If you find any excessive frost or staining on the underside of your roof or you find any ice dams on the surface of your roof, consult an expert.
- Inspect all your seasonal indoor and outdoor electrical cords, plugs, outlets and lights to make sure they are free of wear. If you detect wear or they feel warm, replace immediately and recycle the old ones with a certified electronics recycler.
Go through this checklist to make sure your home is safe and cozy this winter. You know things are going to get cold quickly now!
While you may not be thinking about shade at this time of year, if you think you might be interested in getting some awnings or shutters for your home (or someone else’s for a Christmas gift), please contact us.