Weather The Winter With These Winter-proofing Home Tips

Warm up your home without the thermostat
Warm up your home without the thermostat

After some mild fooling around, winter’s finally here for real. We’re never surprised by the cold, but we know winter can also deliver incredibly harsh storms that cost a serious amount of cash to repair, and wreak havoc on your home. As the days get progressively colder – there are few things more comforting than being able to retreat into the warmth of your home. However, having this spoiled by a sudden property emergency can lead to serious problems. Planning ahead today can be a good way to ensure you remain protected against future problems.

Here are some simple ways to avoid the winter blues and keep your home defended as the temperature starts to drop.

1. Remember Routine Roof Maintenance

The chances are you don’t want to come home from a hard day of work and clean out the gutters – but a little bit of routine maintenance can actually do a great deal of good for your home. Start by checking the roof for missing or cracked tiles that might allow rain or snow to seep through and cause rot or damp. If you don’t want to climb up there yourself – you can always have us come and do the check for you.

While you’re at it, make sure to clear all drains and gutters of any leaves, debris, and plants which can lead to a buildup of water in the system. Clearing these spaces out is crucial if you want to protect your home from water damage – and you should also ensure the gutter junctions are tight too!

2. Make Sure Your Home Is Properly Insulated

Dedicating some time to properly insulating your home can be beneficial not only for your comfort and family health over the winter months – but also for the health of your wallet. The right insulation can reduce the amount of heat your home regularly loses, meaning that you are more likely to cut down on household bills, and conserve that much-needed energy. When it comes to insulating, the loft is usually a good place to start, as you can lose anywhere up to 25% of the heat in your house through the roof without the right loft insulation.

You can also consider cavity wall insulation if it’s suitable for your property, and don’t forget to take time to insulate the water tank too.

3. Double-Check Doors And Windows

If your windows and doors aren’t in great shape, then you could be letting rain water, snow, and cold air into your home on a regular basis. This means it might be a good idea to ensure that everything is air-tight now – so that you can carry out repairs before the problem grows to be too significant. Remember to check the woodwork outside of your house as well – even on the upper floors of the house – around the windowsills, for damage or rot.

4. Insulate Your Pipes

If you have un-insulated water pipes throughout your attic, or crawlspace, it’s a good idea to insulate them before the winter hits. Aside from simply helping you to avoid the pain of frozen pipes – which can lead to serious damage and bursting – insulation also helps to prevent condensation and keep the water in hot-water lines at a good temperature. Many hardware stores are packed with foam tubes that you can install yourself – or you can easily contact a home-improvement or DIY provider to do the renovations for you.

5. Take Prompts From The Snow

Even a light spattering of snow can be enough to assist you in finding maintenance issues that you might struggle to notice otherwise. Try going outside after snow has fallen and watching how it melts. If you see numerous strips of bare roof between lines of snow – the chances are that you’re dealing with inadequate insulation.

If you regularly notice that icicles form rapidly when the weather isn’t even warm enough to melt the snow – this could mean that warm air is circulating in the attic – meaning that a leak needs sealing, or the insulation is too thin.

How do you look after your home during the winter months? Do you have any winter-proofing tips that can help fight off the chill this year? Let us know in the comments!

Important Fall Furnace Maintenance Reminder

fall-furnace-maintenance-reminder-grennan-constructionAutumn is here, which means that it is time to schedule your annual furnace maintenance appointment.  It is important to make sure that you regularly get your furnace cleaned and inspected each year, just before the cold months set in.  This service will help ensure that your furnace is not worn out and that the furnace works when you need it to.

During your annual maintenance appointment, the inspector should not only make sure that your system itself is working properly, but he or she should also verify that the dangerous exhaust is vented properly out of a flu or chimney. This step in the service appointment can prove to be life-saving as there are thousands of tragic stories each year about families unknowingly falling victim to the deadly effects of carbon monoxide gas.

Additionally, you should also have your fireplace serviced, which should include checking the flue and chimney for any blockages or damage.

These service appointments are not only helpful for the safety of you and your family, but they can also help you save money from having to replace or fix any damage caused by improperly functioning furnaces and fireplaces.  Last, but not least, it’s also a great time to check the batteries and function of your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Grennan Construction, a family owned and operated company since 1998.  We specialize in roofing, siding, windows, insulation, gutters and chimney repairs. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter.


Photo Credit: Danilo Rizzuti via