Yes, we just got through a heatwave, but before you know it, autumn will be here and with it, the cold, frosty weather. That means now is the time to start thinking about steps you should take to ensure your home and car are in top shape to handle everything Mother Nature throws at it this winter.
- First, have your furnace serviced. Yes, you can do some things like change the filters yourself, but having your unit professionally serviced ensures your furnace will be ready for action. Plus, many maintenance services come with warranties for peace of mind that lasts the whole season. Have the chimney checked too (that’s especially important if you have a fireplace or wood-burning or pellet stove).
- Grab some caulk and seal those windows. Hot summer sun can cause caulk to warp, shrink and crack. Replacing worn caulk stops air leakage both ways. All it takes is a few tubes to save a bundle on your heating bills. Buy a can or two of spray foam and seal around pipes or cable wires where they enter your house.
- Insulate pipes in your basement and in any unheated areas to prevent freezing and to maintain hot water temperature to help keep fuel bills low.
- Make sure your gutters are clean. Do it now before heavy fall rains arrive to ensure proper drainage, then again once the leaves fall to prevent ice from damming up this winter.
- Clear any brush from around your house to eliminate cover for rodents that may want to hunker down in your basement or crawlspace.
- Have your car serviced and make sure the battery is in good shape and the anti-freeze levels are appropriate for your vehicle. While you’re at it, have the cabin filter changed if you haven’t done so recently. A new filter means you’ll be breathing cleaner air while driving with the windows up.
- Make sure your car’s heater and defroster are working, and grab some extra windshield wiper blades and windshield deicer to keep in your trunk. While you’re at it, put together a winter car emergency kit with a shovel, some kitty litter (to provide traction on icy spots), some flares and an emergency blanket.
- Check your tires for worn treads and invest in a new set now to ensure they have optimal traction for icy roads.
Fall is a great time to review your insurance policy to make sure you have enough coverage just in case fall or winter storms cause damage to your home or car. Call Old Bay today at (410) 777-5390 to review your policy.