Winter comes with many perks such as sleigh rides and picturesque white landscapes, but it also makes your house prone to breakdowns. Your home needs a helping hand to prepare itself for winter.
Common Home Issues You May Face in the Winter
Below are the most common issues you may encounter during winter months.
Once paint has cracked or peeled, it’s only a matter of time before moisture will appear and begin to cause damage to your home. Bur, proper insulation, moisture barriers and sufficient ventilation will help to prevent this issue. Also, many manufacturers offer paints that are formulated for cold weather to circumvent this problem altogether.
Drafts and air leaks
Most of time, they are caused by a lack of insulation, but spotting this sooner rather than later can save you both time and money. Make sure you conduct an energy audit regularly as draft and air leaks are among the most common culprits for energy loss, causing your HVAC to work twice as hard to achieve the desired temperature.
Adding a layer of insulation will make a ton of difference, but you can also seal these leaks with spray foam or caulk. Weather stripping can help you both prevent the issue and reduce your utility bill.
Winter creates the perfect environment for mold that is caused by excess moisture. Therefore, the key is to secure good air circulation within your home. In practical terms, open the window when cooking or use a fan when you shower to dry out the room.
When a boiler loses pressure or there is a leak in the pipes, a boiler can break and this is also common during winter. But if you service it annually and check it regularly for leaks, this could help prevent future issues.
When the temperatures drop during winter months, pipes are at greater risk of freezing. When this happens, they become more exposed and therefore are more likely to burst. Although a common issue, you can keep your pipes warm by insulating them and minimalizing any droughts coming from the outside.
Gutter problems can happen at any time but they can also be prevented by clear troughs and rain chains from debris before winter hits so water can flow freely.
Winter Safety Tips for Your Home
These tips will help you protect your home from winter.
Winterize your pipes
Use foam, heating cables, or pipe sleeves to ensure pipes stay warm. The more you insulate, the safer your home and pipes will be.
Inspect your roof
Make sure you perform this check before the first snow hits. Damaged, loose or missing shingles are much easier to fix before snow or a storm hits. Also make sure to inspect your chimney and vent stacks are intact.
Icicles might seem magical but they are dangerous. They can damage your harm and even injure someone. Roof heating cables are the cure or ask a professional to identify other solutions.
By sealing drafts, you will help your heater run more efficiently thus saving money on your PECO bill as well.
Keep your home germ-free
As viruses and bacteria thrive during winter months, make sure you let in fresh air from time to time to make the environment less friendly to these intruders. If this unprecedented year has taught us anything, it is the importance of washing your hands regularly and overall hygiene.
How to Stay Safe and Warm in The Winter
A lot of people opt for space heaters which are more economical than central heating as they can lower your energy bill by adding direct warmth to where you need it most. Portable space heaters are both economical and efficient at providing heat, but they can be a safety hazard unless they are used with care. It’s best that they have an automatic shut-off switch and a non-glowing element. Never place a space heater near water as this increases the risk of an electrical shock and keep it at least three feet away from furniture and drapes, on a firm surface and not on top of furniture as this increases the risk of fire. Needless to say, never leave children unattended near them and inspect them regularly.
Something else you can do to stay warm while also benefiting your wallet is to dress for the occasion. Wear long sleeves, plenty of extra layers and cover yourself with blankets to reduce the strain on your HVAC system.
You can’t keep winter from coming but you can take action to ensure you stay safe and enjoy it in the comfort of your own home.