That’s it! Summer has come to an end there is no getting around the fact that winter is on its way. There’s a chill in the air, the days are getting shorter and the little ones have gone back to school. Don’t get left out in the cold! Check out our simple tips to get your home winter-ready and keep you feeling your best. When the mercury drops below zero, you’ll be ready for whatever Old Man Winter has up his sleeve!
1. Check your furnace
Be sure to change your filter and clean your vents. Ideally, have a professional inspect your heating system. It’s not too late to sign up for an equipment Protection Plan.
2. Order your heating oil
Do you use an oil heating system? If so, order your heating oil now to avoid any unpleasant surprises and stay warm when the cold weather hits. Did you know that we offer Automatic delivery so that you can plan your refills?
Do you think you’ll have more guests visiting this winter or do you know you that you used more fuel last year? Tell us if you expect your usage to increase. Contact one of our customer service representatives to discuss.
3. Inspect the inside of your home
Put on your inspectors’ hat and take the time to go around your home and inspect each room. It’s the best way to save money and stay safe. Here are a few tips to keep in mind when you are doing the once over:
- Start by changing the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Remove your window air conditioning unit and store your portable air conditioner
- In the kitchen, clean the filter on your stove and do the same in the bathroom.
- If necessary, caulk and seal your windows to reduce any cold drafts.
- Finally, clean and unblock your electric baseboard heaters, convectors or radiators (if you use a water heating system).
4. Inspect the outside of your home
Once you finish the once over on the inside of your home, continue on to the outside:
- Caulk and seal any cracks around your home where insects might be able to squeeze through and plug them as needed.
- Inspect the roof and remove any debris.
- Do the same to the gutters by clearing away any debris and leaves.
- Finally, inspect the attic to make sure that no water or air is seeping through.
5. Tidy up your backyard
Finish preparing your home by tidying up your backyard:
- Put away your patio furniture.
- Put away your barbecue if you don’t plan on using it this winter. Take the time to clean it before packing it away. Store it indoors, without the cover or propane tank, or outside, with the cover and with or without the propane tank. You should never store propane tanks inside your home or garage.
- Close up your pool or, for those who use it only during the summer, your spa. If you enjoy using it when the air gets chilly, drain it one last time as late as possible into the season.
- Prune your perennials to increase their blooms in the spring.
- Finally, don’t forget to shut off any indoor water outlets so that your pipes don’t freeze!
6. Prepare your fireplace or stove
There is nothing better than a warm comforting fire on the first cold day of the year. If you have a fireplace or stove in your home—wood, electric propane or oil—make sure that’s it’s ready to use when you need it most.
- Do you have a propane fireplace? Order your tanks ahead of time, clean the burners, wipe down the glass and check that the seal around the door fits snugly.
- Do you have a wood-burning fireplace? It’s a good idea to clean and inspect the chimney and flue pipes and make sure that you have enough firewood.
- Do you have an oil stove? Make sure that the burners and stovepipes are properly cleaned and sealed and that the flue has been swept.
*To be safe, leave any annual maintenance to a professional. Contact one of our customer service representatives if you have any questions.
7. Create a cozy atmosphere inside your home
Live your best life during this season of change. There’s nothing better than a comfortable and inviting home to sit back, relax and wait for winter to arrive.
- Take out your warm blankets and keep them within reach for those evenings spent cozying up on the couch curled up in front of a warm fire or good TV show.
- Dig up your candles and small decorative lights to set the mood as soon as the sun goes down.
- Dust off your cookbook and prepare some simmered or braised meat dishes. Comfort food goes best with cold nights!
- Do you have warm, winter-friendly duvet covers and sheets? It’s time to take them out!