The best way to start prepping your house for the coming winter is to take a walk.
A leisurely walk around the house in daylight will give you a chance to take note of anything out of place, frazzled or clogged, torn or missing. Write down items to make a checklist. Then check your garage, basement, shed or storage cabinet to see what supplies you already have so you know what you need to get.
Take the list to your local hardware store. Ace Hardware associates can help you locate those items, give tips and tricks for installation, and suggest other tasks and items to complete your list.
Here is a basic list of projects you’ll want to consider. Note that kits, and supplies are readily available at the store.
Put clear plastic sheeting over windows, using available kits, to help reduce drafts. You’ll need a hair dryer to smooth out the wrinkles.
Insulate hose spigots with available covers. This helps protect against freeze damage to valves and valve gaskets.
Insulate pipes in areas where freezing might occur with available pipe insulation.
Remove and store window screens.
Inspect and repair or replace door and window weather stripping. Caulk as needed to close gaps. Insulation strips for door bottoms are also available.
Try your furnace before it is needed in case it needs servicing.
Run your humidifier(s) to check for proper function, whether yours is on the furnace or is a portable unit.
Clear gutters and downspouts, and make sure downspout splash blocks are in place. Leaves and debris combined with water can cause major damage.
You may need to call a professional for other tasks, such as winterizing your in-ground sprinkler system if you have one, repairing ductwork, inspecting your roof for potential damage, a furnace tune-up, and cleaning your fireplace, chimney and flue.
Bjorkman's Ace Hardware
4520 W. Crystal Lake Rd., McHenry, Il., 60050
Call (815) 385-3660