How to prepare your home before winter
We had an unusually warm week for this point of the year, but winter is coming.
While Minnesotans can’t control the weather, we can control how prepared our home is for the cold and snow that we’ll have this winter.
“It’s worth it to take that hour out of your time this time of year to get your house ready for the wintertime,” Andy Lindus, an owner of Lindus Construction, told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS.
Lindus walked through home winterization with 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS and offered some tips for homeowners.
Starting with windows, Lindus noted that replacing weather-stripping foam can help energy efficiency greatly, depending on the shape of the window.
“This fuzzy stuff, if you see it’s not in good shape, chances are it’s allowing air to come through there,” Lindus said.
It’s also a good time to replace your furnace filter and batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Homeowners can also switch the direction of ceiling fans so they spin clockwise and keep warmer air lower.
“Keeping it running all winter long is important. It keeps the air even in the house, and keeps everything the same temperature,” Lindus said.
Outside, it’s important to open and close water spigots to release any trapped water before shutting them off for the season. Lindus says that will prevent frozen pipes, which can come with a costly repair bill.
“If the lever is even with the pipe, that means it’s open; if the lever is up against the grain of the pipe, that means it’s closed,” he said.
Some homeowners may cover their air conditioning unit during the winter, but Lindus says that’s not a good idea because it could attract pests.
“Rodents love them. It’s a great place to go in the wintertime, they’ll store whatever food that they’re gathering, or they’ll get in there and eat the wires out completely,” he said.
When heavy snow falls, it’s important to get outside and shovel snow away from the intake valve to your furnace, because if it can’t breathe, it won’t be able to make heat. But, fingers crossed, we won’t have to deal with that for some time, yet.