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Readying Your Home For Winter

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When cold temperatures arrive, they tend to arrive quickly. So, as summer slowly turns to fall, head outside, while the weather is still tolerable, to get a few projects done that will prepare your home for winter. If you make this checklist part of your fall routine, you'll run less risk of incurring costly damage during winter's sometimes brutal weather. 

Examine Your Trees

Take a look at the trees on your property to make sure they'll get through the winter. If any limbs appear dead or diseased, remove them. Also remove limbs that are close to windows, roofs and power lines. If these branches break during a windy winter storm, they could damage your property or hit the power lines and cause a power outage. 

Check Your Roof

As long as you're looking up at your trees, take a look at your roof. Watch for damaged shingles that could allow water to enter your home and cause damage. It's also a good idea to clear fallen leaves from gutters and ensure that your downspouts are clear of debris. 

Protect Your Windows

Consider adding storm protection windows to your home. Storm protection windows not only add a layer of insulation to your home to keep you and your family toasty, but they resist breakage, during fierce winds. This will help protect your family members from sustaining injury during a powerful storm. 

Treat Wood

Look around the outside of your home for bare wood. If you see any unpainted or untreated wood on your property, paint it to prevent rot. A lot of moisture can seep in to untreated wood during the winter, which can cause rot, forcing you to repair or replace it sooner than you planned. 

Seal Cracks

Look for cracks on your driveway, sidewalk and foundation. During the winter, water can seep into these cracks and freeze. The frozen water expands, making these cracks larger. If you seal them before frigid winter temperatures arrive, you can stop a small problem from becoming a huge one. 

Check Your Chimney

The fall is the perfect time to have your chimney cleaned and examined by a professional. That way, when the cold temperatures arrive, your fireplace will be clean and ready to hold a crackling fire to help warm your family. 

Check Your Heating System

Have your heating system inspected annually by a professional to make sure it's in good working order. The last thing you'd want is your heating system to give out on a chilly night. At the very least, change your filters before starting to use your heating system.