Winterizing your home

Winter is fast approaching up here in the North Georgia Mountains. Have you winterized your home yet? Did you know that by winterizing your home it will help keep the heat in, the cold out and unnecessary damage from happening! Below you will find some helpful tips to protect your home and stay warm and cozy this winter:

Heating system:
•Make sure everything is working properly! If you haven’t done so already turn the heat on to test it. You should hear the furnace kick on and feel the heat blowing out. Keep the heat set at a minimum of 50.
•Replace your air filters if they are dirty.
•Make sure your heating vents are free and clear of dust and debris.
•Check for Carbon Monoxide (Inexpensive tests are available as well as battery operated alarms)

Air conditioning:
•Clean the unit by removing all dirt debris.

Chimney and fireplace:
•Make sure the chimney is free of all animals including birds and squirrels before lighting a fire.
•Check to make sure the flue is working properly.
•Make sure there is not a draft coming from the chimney. To check this light some paper in the fire place with the flue open. The smoke should rise up, if it doesn’t you could have an obstruction and need to call a professional to clean the chimney.

Plumbing:
•Insulate all exposed piping that is in non insulated spaces such as attics, crawlspaces, outside etc. Make sure you insulate them at minimum with foam insulation.
•Insulate your hot water tank with an insulating blanket.
•Turn off all water to exterior water faucets and disconnect the hose.
•If you will be away from your property for a length of time make sure all water is shut off to prevent pipes from freezing, drain the water from the pipes by letting the water run out of your lowest spigot, and consider turning the breaker off on your water heater.

Doors and windows:
•Check for drafts around windows and outside doors. If you feel air coming in install weather stripping.

Roof and gutters:
•Make sure your shingles are not damaged or missing.
•Be sure your gutters are free and clear of debris. Wet leaves in the winter can add weight to the gutter and cause damage. (See the Complete Home Services blog for more on gutter cleaning)

Sprinklers:
•If you have a sprinkler system make sure the water supply is turned off and air is blown through the system to prevent freezing.

Complete Home Services, located in the North Georgia Mountains provides Housecleaning, Window washing, Gutter Cleaning, Yard Services and Landscaping in Union County Georgia, Fannin County Georgia and Towns County Georgia. For your landscaping needs visit our VistaScapes website at www.VistaScapesUSA.com

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