By AJ Danboise
Winter weather can wreak havoc on your home and your family’s safety if proper measures aren’t taken. Here in Farmington Hills and surrounding areas, we are no stranger to frozen pipes, ice dams, and untimely, winter furnace breakdowns. Luckily, so far this year, Southern Michigan has had a mild fall. Before snow and ice settle in, there are several areas in your home that need to be protected and maintained to keep your home safe this winter. Follow these tips to protect your home from the inside out.
Top 6 Areas in Your Home for Winter Maintenance
- Pipes and Indoor Plumbing
- Attic and Roof
The most important thing you can do this winter to protect your roof is to minimize any damage from heavy snow and ice. Be sure to remove any tree branches that are close to your home that could get weighed down with ice or snow and fall on your house – or a neighbor’s. Repair your roof leaks before snow and ice start to build-up and before it has the opportunity to thaw.
Prevent ice dams by making sure your attic is properly ventilated and the attic floor is properly insulated. This will minimize the heat rising through the attic and melting the snow and ice on the roof. When this snow and ice refreezes, an ice dam can be created, leading to water damage or even a roof collapse.
Have your chimney checked by a licensed contractor before using it this winter. Keep the fireplace flue closed when not in use.
- Furnace or Boiler
Before the heating season, have maintenance performed on your furnace or boiler by a licensed professional. They will check for safety standards and any repairs that need to be done to prevent breakdowns during the winter.
Regularly check and replace your furnace filter. Check your furnace filter every month and replace it every 2-3 months, or sooner if needed.
Check all vents and ducts for proper air flow. Make sure the heating vents are not being blocked by furniture or window treatments.
- Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
House fires are more common in the winter than any other time of the year. Regularly check your smoke detectors, fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly and do not need batteries replaced.
- Alternate Heating Source
When it comes to snow, ice, and freezing temperatures, it’s always best to plan for the worst. Keep a safe, alternative heating source available in your home and alternate fuels available in case your heater or power goes out unexpectedly.
Left unprotected, pipes can easily freeze during our Michigan winters. Protect your pipes this winter by wrapping exposed pipes with insulation sleeves. Take special precautions with pipes that are exposed or closer to the outside of your houses such as those in your basement, crawlspaces, and attic. Another trick is to keep cabinet doors open to allow warm air to circulate around pipes. It’s also a good idea to keep a slow trickle of water flowing through your kitchen faucet or the faucet that has pipes closest to the outside of your home.
It’s not too late to make sure your home is prepared for the winter! Take steps to keep you and your family safe. Make repairs and soon as they arise and always be prepared. AJ Danboise Plumbing, Heating, Cooling & Electrical is here for you any day, any time for any of your home’s plumbing, heating, and electrical needs. Call us at (248) 453-2337 to schedule an appointment today!