Monday, October 30, 2017
Well its getting near that time of the year. Many of us are cutting the lawns for the last time. Thinking of putting on the winter tires. Putting away all of the summer things, and preparing for another wonderful winter in Ottawa. Well here are a few tips to prepare your home for the coming winter months.
Lawn and gardens: Be sure to apply some winterguard to your lawn now. I’m sure you have all seen the commercials, well they don’t lie! The best time to nurture that lawn of yours to ensure its up to par next year, is to apply some nutrients now to last it through the winter and grow some deep roots. Within your gardens, pull out any excessive weeds that you forgot about in the last few months, save the hassel in the spring, so you can get right to planting.
Furnace and A/C: Air conditioners! Why should I even be mentioning that you ask. Well it is important to cover up that A/C unit outside to shield it from the elements. No don’t use that crappy vinyl cover that they gave you when you purchased it. That is great for more southern climates, but here in Canada it will trap in moisture, then it freezes, no good. It’s also a hotel for mice! Simply place a sheet of plywood over top of the unit and stabilize it with a brick on top. Next I want you to head to your electrical panel, and flip the breaker so that no one accidentally trys to turn it on in the dead of winter, as this will pretty much destroy your unit.
As for the Furnace, change that filter if you haven’t done so already. This should be done every 3 months, especially if you have pets or allergies, not expensive to do, and will ensure that your furnace can breath a bit better and it will be more efficient. Perhaps get the duct work cleaned as well if you haven’t done so in over a year.
Exterior hoses – When you are brining in your hoses from outside, be sure to also turn off the exterior water source from the interior of the home. This will prevent water from staying in the pipes to close to the outside and freezing over during the winter.
Windows – Some people like to put plastic wraps over the windows to help with heat loss during the cold winters. Be sure to do this properly though, otherwise you are wasting your time. Ensure that you cover over the trim of the window a few inches at least on each side. Its not just through the cracks of the window frame that the cold can come through but also the wooden trim around the window as well. Use a blow dryer to heat and tighten the plastic after application to ensure that it gets a nice smooth finish.
Fireplaces: Be sure to get your chimney swept clean before use each year. Also shovel out all of last years soot and ashes, better now then when its -30 and you want to build your fire. For gas fireplaces, ensure that the flame is burning a nice blue flame. The bluer the flame, then cleaner it is burning.
Calibrate your home for consistent temperature: everyones comfort level is different and playing with that thermostat will really crank up the costs of heating your home during winter. Be sure to get a programable thermostat, and use its features. Next you are going to close off all of the vents on the upper level of your home, and open all of the vents on the lower levels. (hopefully the opposite of what you did before the summer) Hot air rises, and in about 24 hours or so, the whole house should be at the same temperature. If you don’t have a ceiling fan at the top of your stairway, not a bad idea to get one installed to assist in the process of pulling up some of the warmer air from downstairs.(vise versa in summer, reverse the setting to have it blow down the cooler air.)
Follow these tips and you should save yourself a bit of cash and headaches. In the meantime, enjoy the beautiful fall colours, and remember if you know of anyone thinking of buying or selling in the Ottawa area, please feel free to pass along my information!
Born and raised in the Ottawa area, with years of experience in the Real Estate industry, I have the tools needed to get you started on your next move. Be it buying or selling, I am confident that from your first home, to your dream home, I can help make your dreams become a Reality................ Read More