How to Winterize Your Home

Winterizing Your Home

As we enter the cold months in the Northern Hemisphere, there are steps you can take to protect your home and your pipes from the cold and may reduce your energy costs. It's important to protect your household plumbing pipes and inside water meter from freezing or bursting.

Here are some tips to help winterize your home:

  • Insulate outside walls.

  • Replace any old or inefficient windows. Windows are one of the major ways heat leaks out of your house.

  • Seal off drafty windows and patio doors with clear plastic. 

  • If you have a lot of outside doors that leak air, you can seal a few off using plastic or caulk putty.

  • Seal all air leaks in crawl spaces and basements. If your vents won't close, cover them from the inside with insulation, cardboard, plastic or newspaper.

  • If your furnace is more than 10 years old, there’s a good chance that it wastes a lot of fuel. Consider upgrading to a newer one.

  • Inquire at your local plumbing or hardware store about materials to insulate pipes and meters.

  • Check to be certain that any water lines or fire sprinkler piping installed in the attic are properly insulated above the piping with a continuous R30 rating. 

  • Turn off the water to outside faucets, remove hoses and drain the pipes. 

NOTE:  Water meters and interior plumbing pipes need to be located in an area with a minimum temperature of 50 F year round.

If you will be gone only a short period of time, find a reliable neighbor to check the property daily.  It is a good idea to have your utilities’ telephone numbers in an obvious location.

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