Winter is coming, and she’s bringing 30 of your closest friends and family for that holiday party you throw every year. You know what that means: It’s time to get your home prepped and ready for the colder weather and a house full of guests; and we’re here to help!
Cold Weather Home Maintenance Tips
Whether your front door is going to turn into a revolving door for guests throughout the holiday season or not, it is a good practice to do the following every year to prepare your home for the change in weather. Here is a seasonal home maintenance checklist of a handful of specific things you can do to ensure your holidays are filled with nothing but warmth, happiness, and eggnog.
- Change Your Furnace Filter – This simple swap will help extend the life of your HVAC system, help prevent restricted airflow, keep air quality healthy and best of all, these efforts typically lead to lower energy costs.
- Give Your Oven The Biscuit Test – Does your oven cook evenly? Make sure your oven can handle cooking that famous turkey this holiday season. Try the oven biscuit method test. See the video below.
- Disconnect Your Hoses and Turn Off Your Outdoor Spigots – Store your garden hoses for the winter, and drain the water from your outdoor spigots. First, turn off the water valve in your home. Then, open the faucet outside to let the water drain. Inside, turn your water back on and rest assured that you will not have to worry about cracked or frozen pipes this winter!
- Check the Sump Pump! – Do a test before you find a few inches of water in your basement. It’s simple: just pour enough water into the sump pump hole to raise the float. You will know it’s working when the pump kicks on and does its work getting the water out. You’ll know if it’s malfunctioning if that water stays put, and you can thank your lucky stars you did some pre-winter home maintenance before the heavy guest traffic invades your bathroom!
- Service Your Furnace – There’s nothing worse than having a house full of people and no heat! Schedule the annual furnace maintenance to ensure there are no cracks in the heat exchanger that could lead to carbon monoxide leaking into your home. It’s important to the safety of your family and friends in the house, the longevity of your furnace, and the balance of your checking account!
- Replace Your Electrical Panel and Bad Outlets – If your electrical panel looks outdated or happens to be a Stab-Lok panel made by Federal Pacific Electric (FPE), seriously consider upgrading to a newer model. While you’re at it, replace all those bad electrical outlets too. These preventative measures will decrease the chances of a malfunction and an electrical fire as well as increase your home’s efficiency, helping your power bill. That’s especially important as you take your cues from Clark W. Griswold and string lights on your house.
St. Louis winters can be rough, with a lot of temperature fluctuation that affects our health, our roads, and our home electrical and heating and cooling equipment. Perform and schedule your annual winter home maintenance, so you can spend more time trying new recipes for holiday cocktails and desserts and less time dealing with equipment malfunctioning and wreaking havoc on your home this year!