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It’s That Time of Year Again- Guidelines for Preparing Your Home for Winter

November 1, 2011

Happy November! It is once again the time of year to get outside while the weather is still mild and
winterize your home. A little proactive work now can help save thousands of dollars and aggravation later. It is very important to ensure that the following items are reviewed on a yearly
basis for the proper winter protection of your home:

  1. Shut off all outside hose bib connections at the interior shut off valves.  Waterlines that may be in an exterior wall, such as walkout basements, should be shut off but drained and left in the open position to allow for the expansion of any residual water in the line.

2. Many times we have water lines and slop sinks in our garages.  It is very important to shut off the water lines and drain the lines as well.  Antifreeze can be placed in any drain traps to prevent freezing of the water left in the drain trap.  Even though we have garage doors, in extreme temperatures, when the doors are left open for extended periods of time, there can be freezing issues.

3. Clean all gutters and downspouts to ensure they are clear of leaves and debris.  Cleaning gutters will allow the ice to melt properly throughout the winter season.  Clogged downspouts will cause excessive icicles and possible ice damming, which can lead to leaks in the interior.

4. Inspect all exterior caulk joints for water tightness. Once a year, you should do a visual inspection of the caulk joints around windows, doors, and exterior penetrations.  Proper caulking will prevent air infiltration, water infiltration and insects in the spring.

5. Inspect furnace air filter.  Each winter season your furnace should be inspected and cleaned.  Many times we have more than one filter.  They need to be inspected and replaced if dirty.  This will allow for proper air flow and reduced heating and cooling costs.

6. Put up driveway guides for plows and deep snow.  This will prevent the destruction of landscaping and irrigation heads. 

7. Ensure all windows and doors are closed tight with a good seal.  Whether the windows are casements or double hung, it is important that the locking mechanism is engaged to allow the proper seal with the weather stripping.  Also, most exterior doors have an adjustable threshold, which may need adjustment to allow for a proper seal.

8. Blow out and winterize landscape irrigation systems.  It is important to have all zones in the irrigation system blown out and main waterline shut off and drained by a qualified professional.  The blowout point should be left off to allow expansion of residual water in the line. 

If you have any questions about these proper winterization methods please do not hesitate to call us at
440-543-3333. If you need a professional to perform these items, we can assist you. These small steps can go a long way in protecting your investment.

We would like to wish you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving. We are all blessed in so many ways.

Ted Otero