winter home maintenance tipsLet’s face it, we’re all spending a lot more time at home, but with the spring and summer months, we were able to get outside quite a bit. With the colder months ahead, we’ll be forced to stay inside. And if you live in Kansas City, you know we’ll be enduring harsh temperatures, wind, snow, ice…ew, gross, you name it! So, here are our top six winter home maintenance tips to get your safe haven ready.

Some of these will sound similar to some tips you read in our Fall Home Maintenance Tips blog, but they’re unique to the winter season, too, so keep reading!

Photo by Jessica Johnston on Unsplash

    1. Get that chimney ready for Santa! If you’re lucky enough to have a cozy fireplace to snuggle up next to this winter, you’ll want to make sure it’s in top-top shape.
      1. Make it clear of nests, rodents and any drawers that Santa left behind last year…ho ho ho!
      2. Check up on the flue damper functions, that it opens and closes and stays locked when necessary.
      3. If needed, call a professional in to give a thorough cleaning to remove any ash or creosote debris. We highly recommend Fluesbrothers Chimney and Fireplace!
    2. You got pipes, son! Pipe down, pipe down. Okay, we’ll stop. But really, this is one where you don’t want bulging pipes. We want that water flowing through like normal and not freezing. So check for leaks and cracks, especially in places that are unheated like the garage, attic and basement.

      Know how to shut off your water in case of the unfortunate event of pipes freezing so you can make sure they don’t burst.
    3. Trim your trees. The last thing you want during an ice storm is for a heavy branch to fall on your roof…or your neighbors fence. If you live in a neighborhood with older homes, your power lines could also be above ground, and a tree falling on power lines would also be pretty tragic as you’ll need your heat to keep going during frigid temps! So trim up those trees and remove any dead branches.
    4. Speaking of heat, let’s talk furnaces. Listen, you don’t want to be in the middle of hosting 14 friends and family on New Year’s Eve and have to call the HVAC guy when your heat goes out and pay double because it’s a holiday (may or may not be speaking from experience here). So, what can you do to prevent that, unfortunately, non-hypothetical situation?
      1. First things first, turn on that thermostat. If you turn on the heat, kick up the temperature a few degrees and the furnace doesn’t come on within a minute, there could be an issue with your blower or heat pump. If this is the case, it’s best to call a professional. (May we suggest Blue Heating and Cooling or Anthony Plumbing, Heating and Cooling?) 
      2. Make sure you’re changing your furnace filters on a regular basis. This keeps dust particles out of your furnace and prolongs its life.
      3. Don’t forget the heat exchanger. It should be cleaned annually by a professional where they’ll check for cracks that could lead to carbon monoxide leaks.
    5. Insulate your home well. You don’t want cold drafts sneaking in and wasting your heat. So take the following precautions:
      1. Add weather stripping to doors and caulk around windows.

        winter home maintenance tips

        Photo by Ksenia Chernaya from Pexels

      2. If you’re in an older home, remove screens from windows and add storm windows.
      3. Add extra insulation in the attic to help guard against ice dams
    6. Stock up early on safety and maintenance equipment you’ll need in case of snow, ice or power loss:
      1. Snow melt, shovels and ice scraper
      2. A generator, candles, lanterns and warm blankets
      3. Snacks, wine and vodka (priorities, okay?)

Now that you’ve reviewed all our winter home maintenance tips, do you feel overwhelmed or motivated? If you’re overwhelmed because it feels like too much on your plate to handle on your own, be sure to take advantage of some of our preferred vendors that we’ve listed on our blog and that we have our website. If you’re motivated, may the force be with you!

We always want to be an available resource to our clients. So feel free to reach out to the Dani Beyer Real Estate team with any questions! And if you’re in the market for a realtor because you’d rather just buy a new home than mess with any of this stuff in your old home, we can help you out there too. 😉

Main Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash