Serving Boise & Surrounding Areas

How to Prepare Your Home for Winter Weather

4 Home Winterization Tips

As the Treasure Valley starts to transition into colder weather and snow flurries, it’s time to start winterizing not only the house, but storage sheds and other outbuildings as well. While storage areas don’t need to stay warm, they do need to stay safe and dry so the items in them are protected from the elements.

When winterizing the home, here are some items to focus on:

  • Windows and Doors– If not winterized properly, drafts can get through doors and windows, causing the heating system to go into overdrive. Caulk around doors and windows, install weather stripping and invest in energy efficient window treatments.
  • Decks and Porches– Take care to winterize outdoor spaces and protect them from the elements. Store any chairs or other items that won’t be able to stand the snow, rain and wind. Also, by applying a water-repellent sealant to decks, porches and railings, it can protect them from the moisture.
  • Roof, Gutters, and Drains– Roofs take a beating year round, and can become particularly damaged during winter storms. Take the time to have it inspected and repaired to limit damage this winter. Gutters and drains are essential to guiding water away from the home, preventing flooding. Give them a good cleaning, and make sure drains are positioned away from the house.
  • Garage, Sheds and Storage– Attached garages that are uninsulated can let heat escape during the winter, increasing the energy bill. Weather stripping the garage door and the door leading inside can help with this. Storage areas need to be able to keep items dry so make sure their doors and windows seal properly, and clean any gutters the buildings might have.

Another essential item to check is the furnace. Make sure everything is in working order before the cold really sets in. Have Diamond Heating and Cooling service the furnace and check for problems.

Be Energy Efficient While on Vacation

Many people travel during the holidays to visit family or simply escape the cold for a while. Either way, they should prepare their home before leaving so that their electricity bill is lower when they return. Just because the lights will get turned on less doesn’t mean the bill will be that much lower. Try these tips to keep electricity usage down during vacation:

1. Heating

It can be tempting to just turn off the furnace, but to keep things from freezing, the thermostat should be set no lower than 50 degrees. If a pet is being left behind, homeowners should turn it up a bit to keep them comfortable.

2. Water Heater

Often neglected, the water heater can be turned off, either by shutting off the circuit breaker or gas valve. If homeowners are going to be away for an extended vacation they should put it on the lowest setting or the vacation setting if it has one.

3. Electronics and Appliances

Everything that is plugged into an outlet is using energy whether its power is turned on or off. Unplugging all of the nonessential items can drastically reduce the amount of energy being used. This includes televisions, coffee pots, lamps and more.

4. Refrigerators

When only gone for a few days, leave it plugged in. When leaving for an extended vacation it can be cleaned out and unplugged. Since it is such an electricity hog, this is a good idea for those who will be gone for weeks or months. Clean it out and defrost it then set a box of baking soda in it or leave the door cracked open.

5. Blinds and Curtains

Lastly, use window coverings to conserve heat energy while away. By closing them before leaving, less heat will escape and they will keep the temperature from fluctuating as much.

If homeowners come home and discover their heating and cooling system is on the fritz, contact Diamond Heating and Cooling.
We can get everything back up and running in no time!

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