Even though temperatures are still pretty warm, cool nights and falling leaves are out to remind us that winter is on its way. Here in Eastern North Carolina, we can go from flip flops and shorts to scarves and coats overnight so its best to be prepared. Here are 10 tips to prepare your home for the upcoming winter:
- Schedule preventative maintenance on your heating system. Having your heating system inspected and cleaned by a HVAC professional not only prevents breakdowns, it also makes your system run more efficiently. Higher efficiency = Lower electric bill!
- Make a schedule to replace your filters. Keeping your air filters clean allows your system to run more efficiently. We know how busy you are especially during the holiday season so you should be sure to mark your calendar every 30 days. Hawk iMedia has a free app called “Filter Fresh” than will be sure to remind you to replace air filters and other filtration appliances in your home (www.hawkimedia.com).
- Inspect floor & ceiling vents. Take a quick walk throughout your home and be sure that nothing is blocking your vents and return. Look out for things like dust, curtains, or furniture that may be obstructing your air flow. Cleaning and inspecting your vents will help with proper air flow and prevent unwanted air infiltration.
- Prepare windows and doors. Look for gaps around your windows and doors. Use weather stripping or sealant to prevent cold air from coming in and warm air from going out of your home. Weather sealing is an easy way to save money on energy bills and improve comfort.
- Clean gutters. Take some time to clear your gutters from debris. Clean gutters help to eliminate pests and prevent massive water damage inside and outside of your home. When the drainage is obstructed, water will pool in places it is not supposed to, such as roofs, walls, and even your foundation.
- Disconnect outdoor hoses and insulate faucets. Be sure to disconnect any water hoses. Freezing can cause damage to hoses as well as to pipes. A pipe that has burst can cost thousands of dollars in repairs.
- Reverse the direction of ceiling fans. We all know that heat rises. Reversing the direction of your ceiling fans to a clockwise rotation, pushes the air that naturally rises to the ceiling back down into the room. This can allow you to feel more comfortable without raising your temperature settings.
- Have ductwork inspected. In typical houses, about 20% of the air that moves through the duct system is lost due to leaks, holes, and poorly connected ducts. The result is an inefficient HVAC system, high utility bills, and difficulty keeping the house comfortable (www.energystar.gov). Our comfort specialists can come to your home and perform a duct blast test which allows the homeowner to actually see where the inefficiencies of their ductwork.
- Check smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. Autumn is a great time to ensure that all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are functioning properly. Be sure to replace the batteries and perform a test. Three of every five home fire deaths resulted from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms (www.nfpa.org).
- Have fireplace cleaned and inspected. There is nothing cozier than spending an evening with family next to a warm fire but lack of maintenance on your fireplace can be dangerous to your family as well. Whether its gas or wood burning, you should call a professional to thoroughly inspect every aspect of your fireplace.
We hope that everyone enjoys a safe and happy winter. If you have questions or concerns, you can always call Davis Heating & AC. Mention this blog to receive 20% off a preventative maintenance check or duct blast test.