Whether you just moved to Ontario, Canada from a warmer climate or you are a new homeowner that has never had to cope with winter before, it is vital to be aware of what you need to do to get your house ready for the colder months of the year.
This post will run down a few issues that you should address before the first snow flies.
1) Check the weatherstripping around your current windows
Of all the points of ingress for cold air, poorly sealed windows are among the worst offenders. Even the tiniest cracks will provide a continuous channel through which frosty drafts can flow into the warm interior of your home.
This forces your heating system to work harder, wearing it out faster and driving your energy bills skyward.
There are many Newmarket windows that have weatherstripping that has worn off over time. Many of these homes here were built in the 1970’s or earlier, making them more likely to have deficient weatherproofing.
By checking them for spots where old weatherstripping has eroded off the exterior of the window, you’ll be able to seal any leaks you find, saving you money over the short and long term.
2) If need be, get new insulated windows
Like Newmarket, many Markham windows are compromised by weatherproofing issues. However, some of these may need more than just a fresh layer of weatherstripping, as they may have old windows with a single pane of glass or internal insulation that had broken down many years before.
In this case, ordering a new window that has double or triple panes (with the space between each sheet being filled with gas) will help keep the heat in your home and the cold outside where it belongs.
3) Clean debris out of your gutter
After addressing your window issues, get up on a ladder and check out your gutters. In all likelihood, they will be filled with leaves, twigs, and other organic matter.
Left uncleaned, clogged gutters will trap water that will then freeze, leading to ice dams that can channel water into your home instead of away from it.
In order to prevent this costly episode, set aside a couple of hours one weekend afternoon and just get it done – the headache you’ll get from a massive repair bill will be much worse than getting some exercise on one of your days off.
4) Inspect and perform maintenance on your heating system
Of all the winter preparations one can do, this is the most important. If you don’t have a properly functioning furnace, you’re going to be miserable once that first Arctic cold front of the season drops down from Hudson Bay.
Get a professional to clean it, turn it on and check for problems. Also, ensure that all your ducts are properly sealed to ensure maximum efficiency; when you’re warm and toasty inside when it’s -20 outside, you’ll be thanking us!