Getting your home ready for cooler temperatures might seem like something only those who live in cold, snowy climates need to worry about. The truth is Texas temperatures can dip low enough that your home needs to be ready as well. Here’s how you can prepare your home for cooler temperatures.
You might choose to warm your home with a cozy fire when the temperature drops, so it’s important to protect your home and family by making sure your fireplace is in good working order. Make sure it’s clean and no critters have made their home there. You can have a professional come in and clean and inspect the fireplace and chimney. To help keep the cold air out and your home warm, keep the flue closed when you aren’t using the fireplace.
It’s a good idea to inspect your foundation to make sure there aren’t any cracks that need repairing. During the cold weather these cracks can become larger. This will allow more moisture in causing further damage that will cost you more to fix. When temperatures fluctuate, this can cause soil to contract and expand, which causes soil instability. This leads to foundation issues. Foundation damage can occur before the temperature reaches freezing. If the temperature dips below 40 degrees for three consecutive days, the risk of foundation damage become higher.
When the cold weather hits, your pipes are at risk. Freezing water expands and this will cause pipes to expand also causing them crack and burst. There are a few things you can do to protect your pipes when the temperatures drop. Disconnect and store outdoor hoses and protect the outdoors faucet with foam insulators. For indoor pipes that are in unheated areas of your home (basement, attic, garage), you will want to protect them with insulation as well.
You want to check your heating system works before cold weather hits. The last thing you want is to turn on the heater on a cold day only to discover it’s not working. Now is also a good time to change filters so that your heater will run efficiently and cleanly. If you have pets, filters are likely to become clogged more quickly. If there are any issues with your furnace or vents that aren’t working, you can deal with them before the cooler weather arrives.
If you have doors and windows that allow drafts into your home, you can seal them and help keep your home warm without having to crank the heat higher. Sealing these areas is inexpensive and can save you money in the long run. Older doors and windows are especially susceptible to allowing the cold air in.
Even if you live in an area where it’s not cold for months on end, you still want to take prepare your home for those random cold days and weeks. Temperatures don’t have to get below freezing to do damage or make you uncomfortable. By preparing your home before a cold snap, you can protect it, your family, and your wallet.