Published On: Mon, Nov 23rd, 2015

Is Your House Ready for Winter?

When fall is in the air, you can pretty much take that as a given that colder weather is on its way. This is true in every part of the country, no matter where you live. Even if you don’t get the ice cold winters of Michigan and South Dakota, you can expect that cooler temps will soon be upon you. Depending on where you are located, you will need to take appropriate steps to prepare your house for winter weather. In Los Angeles, that could mean only changing your storm windows whereas in the north or east, you will make sure you have heavy-duty heating ready to go. According to the amount of winterizing work you need to do, you could run into some major expenses. If you do run into emergency repair work, you can take advantage of auto title loans in L.A. for quick funds. Anyone who owns a car can get quick cash by submitting an online application with their car title.

Public domain image/Wikada

Public domain image/Wikada

Checking Your Furnace

Don’t wait until winter to give your heating system a test run. Hopefully you can find a cool autumn day to turn on your heater. Turn the thermostat up to 80 so you can confirm that it works. You should hear it come on and then after a few minutes warm air should be blowing out of the vents. If all is good you can set the thermostat back to its normal settings for the time of year. If it doesn’t seem to be working properly, you still have time before winter to call a technician. It could need something as simple as replacing the old air filter with a new one. It might also need seasonal maintenance, which should be done regularly. A technician will be sure that your heating vents are clear and do a test for carbon monoxide leaks that can endanger your family.

Cleaning Your Chimney

If you have a wood burning fireplace, look and see if the chimney is clear. Try the damper to make sure it opens and shuts the flue as needed. Check the chimney draft to see that the air rises. Then, take a close look at the brick in your fireplace. If there are any open areas, repair them immediately to avoid fire spreading into the wall surrounding the fireplace.

Insulation and Leaks

No one wants burst pipes in the winter, so you can insulate them ahead of time to protect them from freezing temps. Insulate all water or drain piping that is exposed. For exterior faucets, drain the pipes and turn the water off. If  you will be away for a length of time, you should close the water supply completely and drain the pipes. While you’re at insulating, go ahead and throw some on the hot water tank as well. If your windows leak you can get them repaired or cover them with plastic. Check your roof for broken tiles or leaks where water and cold air can enter.

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at theglobaldispatch@gmail ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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