This is a list of things to do to your home when it gets cold outdoors, and it is getting cold outdoors! All these things will help with the health and maintenance of your home.
- Have your furnace inspected before cold weather arrives.
- Inspect the heat exchanger for cracks.
- Install a clean air filter (this should actually be done once a month).
- Check the thermostat to see if it’s working properly.
- Always inspect fireplaces and chimneys before using. Have them cleaned if needed.
- Keep drapes and blinds closed, except when windows are in direct sunlight. The direct sunlight will help warm your house.
- Cover or remove any window air conditioner units. If they can’t be removed, cover them with plastic and duct tape to keep cold air out and the warm air inside.
- Put draft snakes on windowsills, between window frames, and under the bottom of doors to help keep cold air from coming in.
- Caulk any cracks or holes in the exterior brick (cracks in bricks can mean foundation troubles, have it checked as soon as possible, the earlier you catch foundations problems the better the solution can be).
- Repair or replace weather stripping and thresholds around doors and windows to keep cold air out. This can save you money on heating bills.
- Insulate electrical outlets and switches on exterior walls with foam seals (available at home centers).
- Bring container plants inside to protect them. Potted plants can freeze quickly while plants in the ground have a better chance of surviving.
- Add mulch to ground plants in flowerbeds, or pile fallen leaves around plants and shrubs, which will act as mulch. As the leaves degrade, it helps to nourish the soil.
- Remember to cover plants that are prone to frost damage with a breathable fabric, such as burlap or other types found at your local nursery or home store. Be sure to remove covering when temperatures warm above freezing.
- Drain birdbaths and fountains, if the water freezes it can crack the vessel.
- If you have snow, gently sweep it off plants and shrubs in an upward motion with a broom, this will help the plant to breath and get sun.
- For icy situations use rock salt, sand or clay-based kitty litter on your porch, sidewalk and driveway (NOTE: Salt can damage grass and other plants).
- Stay off your roof during freezing weather, once the ice and snow melt, inspect your roof for any damage that freezing and ice can create.
- Run ceiling fans on low in reverse (clockwise when looking up) to circulate warm air.
- If you use a wood-burning fireplace have plenty of wood before it gets really cold.
- Clean your gutters and downspouts before cold weather arrives to prevent ice from forming in them. If the moisture in the gutters freezes, it can cause your gutters to crack or burst.
- Spray an ice repellent solution on steps and walk ways before freezing weather arrives.
All of these actions will help you and your home during the winter. Cracks in the floors and foundations can cause cold air to enter your home from below, which can greatly affect your energy bill. If you have cracks in your walls, windows or floors give Perma-Pier Foundation Repair of Texas a call to have it checked out. We will schedule an evaluation and see if what you’re noticing is a problem or just normal shifting. Some foundation companies charge for evaluations due to the time involved and technical expertise needed to assess a foundation properly. Perma-Pier will perform this service at no charge to you.
Give Perma-Pier a call, 1.877.840.9993