The weather is changing, which means it’s time to start preparing your home for the colder months ahead. Whether you’re vacating your summer house in Chelan for the season, or simply leaving for a few weeks, follow these five tips on winterizing your home.
Prevent Your Home from Looking Like No One Is Home
One way to protect your home while you’re away is to make it appear as though you never left! Have mail or newspaper subscriptions forwarded to your current address, or ask a friend to pick them up while you are gone. Install motion-sensitive exterior lights on both the front and back door, and set timers so that they go off randomly throughout the night. If you have one, make sure that your alarm systems are working and have been activated. Otherwise, hide valuable items where they are not visible.
Protect Your Pipes
If you are out for the season, consider turning off your water supply and pouring antifreeze into your toilet tanks or bowls. One broken pipe in a vacant home can cause irreversible damage. If you’re leaving for a short time, however, focus on keeping the thermostat above 55℉ and contemplate shutting off the water to unnecessary items such as washing machines or dishwashers.
Perform Routine Maintenance
Any heating, electrical, plumbing, or roof inspections that you have been putting off should be completed before you go. Completing routine maintenance prevents damage to your home and provides a sense of security while you are away!
Prepare for Emergencies
Snowstorms, fires, and flooding are some of the emergencies that can occur while you’re away from home. Start preparing for these emergencies by notifying the police department of your absence, especially if you are going to be gone for an extended period. You could also reach out to a trusted friend or neighbor in the area instead so they can alert you to any suspicious or unwanted activity and occasionally check on your home.
Plan for Pests
Inspect your home for openings that could invite unwanted “guests” in. Sealing windows, chimneys or vents will keep bugs, birds, or other nesting creatures out. Wiping the inside of your freezer and fridge after removing all perishables prevents mold and/or unpleasant smells as well.
Following these five easy steps to properly winterize your home before you head out the door ensures that everything will be waiting safely for your return. Harris + Gasper are here to help you connect to local pros if you need, so feel free to contact us this winter!