Mild autumn days are the perfect time to get your home ready for the coming winter. Preparing your home for weather-related emergencies will help ensure that your family stays safe and warm this season. Use this checklist to make sure your home is ready for winter weather.
Maintain your furnace
- Schedule a comprehensive heating system tune-up with a qualified HVAC professional. Annual preventive maintenance will extend the life of your system, keep your family safe and save you money on energy costs.
- Stock up on air filters and change your filter monthly to ensure proper airflow.
- Clean the area around your furnace and make sure it’s accessible in case of an emergency.
- Know the location of your emergency gas shutoff valve and keep it accessible.
- Post the emergency number for your gas company on your furnace and call immediately if you smell gas around the unit.
Seal air leaks
To check for air leaks in your home, close all the windows and doors on a very windy, cool day. Switch off your furnace and turn on any fans that blow air outdoors, such as your bathroom fans and stove vent. Light an incense stick and move it past these areas where leaks are common:
- Doors and windows. Apply caulk to gaps and cracks between two stationary building materials and install weatherstripping between the movable parts.
- Ceilings, walls and floors. Seal gaps, cracks and holes with expanding caulk.
- Fireplace. Make sure your damper closes tightly, and keep it closed when your fireplace is not in use.
- Ducts. Seal loose joints and cracks in your ducts with metal tape or mastic.
- Electrical outlets and light switches. Install pre-cut foam gaskets behind the outlet and light switch covers on exterior walls.
- Plumbing penetrations. Use caulk to create a seal where pipes pass through exterior walls.
- Fans and vents. Seal around the edges where vents and fans pass through exterior walls.
For more expert advice on preparing your home for weather-related emergencies, or to schedule a preventive tune-up of your HVAC system with one of our highly qualified professionals, please contact AirRite.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Fort Worth and Arlington, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
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