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10 Ways to Maintain Your New Home In The Winter

09 Nov 2017

The winter season is upon us, and at Bradley Homes, we care about the safety and security of the families and individuals who live in our communities. So, to prepare your home for the cold, we’ve created the following list of items to consider while working to maintain your property this winter: 

snow covered new homes

1. Shovel Snow

To preserve your home during the winter, especially if it's a new home in Barrie, be sure to shovel snow away from its foundation. By removing snow that is piling on the side of your house, you’ll reduce erosion and your risk of water leaking as snow melts. If the snow around your home tends to be heavy and your driveway is too large to shovel on your own, it may be wise to invest in a snow blower or to hire professional snow removers.

2. Remove Ice Dams 

Ice dams can form at the edge of your roof, preventing melting snow from draining properly through your gutters and drains. This is most common for homeowners of houses that have poor insulation, but a reliable roofer can address the issue. Trained roofers can both remove ice damming and inspect your roof to ensure your shingles are prepared and will last the winter. 

3. Replace Your Furnace Filter 

Furnace filters need to be checked and replaced over time, as dust, hair, and debris can get trapped in the filter and impact the air quality in your home. Check the size of your filter and determine what Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV) your filter has. MERV ratings are listed on your filter and measure how efficiently the filter captures particles. Knowing these details will help you to choose which filter to buy and to know when its time for your filter to be replaced. 

Snow and ice covered spruce tree branches

4. Protect Your Trees 

The cold can damage your plants and trees in many ways. Not equipped to handle the harsh winds and winter blizzards, bushes and vulnerable plants should be shielded and wrapped. It is also important to monitor any heavy tree branches that surround your home. Remove weak branches that may pose a threat to your home or vehicle should they snap and fall during a storm. 

5. Put Away All Outdoor Furniture 

Make sure all of your outdoor furniture is covered, put away, or stored. It is best to bring your patio furniture into your garage, basement, or in enclosed weather bins. By protecting your outdoor furniture, you’ll eliminate rusting, tearing, shattering, and weather wear. 

6. Melt Ice Away

Be proactive and lay ice melting salt to your driveway and walkways before a storm is set to arrive. This will help to melt the snow away before it has an opportunity to turn into ice. However, if you are unable to lay salt before snowfall, be sure to de-ice the pathways around your home as needed. Reducing ice will help to reduce slips! 

7. Prevent Frozen Pipes

When the temperature drops, be sure to check pipes that are not as frequently used in the winter. These could include your pool pipes, water sprinkler lines, outdoor hoses, basement supply lines, pipes in your cold garage, and any pipes that run in non-insulated areas of your home. By allowing some water to run through these pipes on a consistent basis, you’ll reduce your risk of pipe bursts due to freezing.

A man replacing the batteries in his smoke detector

8. Check The Batteries In Your Smoke Detectors 

As it gets cooler, homeowners are more likely to light candles, fires, and to hang lights that can prove faulty and catch fire. Be sure to check your smoke detectors to ensure they are working properly and will not malfunction in an emergency. This involves replacing the batteries in your alarm once a year, and/or having your fire alarm inspected regularly by a fire alarm inspection serviceperson. Be sure also to check that all candles and flames are attended to and extinguished before you leave a room or go to bed. 

9. Monitor Your Home’s Temperature 

To conserve energy, consider lowering the temperature in your home during the daytime when you are not there. For those with a love of tech, thermostats with heat schedules can ensure your home saves energy and is warm by the time you arrive home. 

10. Prepare For Power Outages 

Organize candles, a lighter, flashlights, a radio, backup batteries, dry food, water, and any other materials you may need in case of a snowstorm power outage. Should the power go out during the winter months, it is critical that you have access to warm materials, food, and light. For those who face frequent outages, consider investing in a generator that will keep your home powered. 

Contact Bradley Homes Today

Bradley Homes homes are equipped to withstand winter blizzards and storms, as they are made to code and with quality, durable, and high-performing materials. Should you have any further questions about preserving your home during the winter, give us a call today.