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First Time Owner’s Guide to Winterizing Your Home

Prepare for the winter by checking these areas.

Congratulations on your first home! Homeownership is an exciting adventure filled with plenty of responsibility. As a new homeowner, you might not even realize the many ways you need to take care of your home throughout the year. Here are a few areas you’ll need to keep an eye on as cold weather approaches.

Backyard

It’s important to keep your backyard clear as temperatures drop. Removing patio furniture and other large items will help prevent dead grass spots come springtime. In addition, bringing those same items indoors or into a storage area will ensure they don’t get damaged by the elements. Rain and snow can both cause rust, and that’s the last thing you want for your expensive lawn furniture. If you can’t bring them inside, cover them up with protective tarps.

Sprinklers

Irrigation and sprinkler systems are especially vulnerable to winter weather. Frozen water can expand inside sprinkler pipes causing them to burst open. To avoid installing a new sprinkler system (which can cost upwards of $3,000), we suggest turning it off before winter begins and then getting your system blown out. For similar reasons, it’s also important to disconnect and drain your water hoses.

Doors and Windows

During the winter, your home’s insulation should be a priority. Door and window frames are prime spots for air leaks (and sometimes water, too). Winter-proof these areas by caulking and replacing weatherstripping. By targeting these spots ahead of cold temperatures, you can keep your house warmer and save money on your heating bill.

Heating System

The winter is fun until your heating system breaks during a snowstorm. To prevent major issues, get your heating system serviced before winter arrives. This means hiring a professional to clean and inspect your system as a part of your yearly maintenance. In addition, keeping your home’s thermostat over 55 degrees will prevent pipes from freezing.

 

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Raquel Guarino

Raquel Guarino is a writer for Realty.com and Help.com. She currently lives in Austin, Texas.

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