Extreme weather conditions can put a big strain on your home, attacking many different areas of your property. Problems such as burst pipes, huge heating bills and broken boilers can make your living situation rather uncomfortable. In the lead up to winter, its a good idea to prepare your new home for the cold season ahead. We’ve come up with a few key areas that could use a bit of maintenance before winter arrives to save you money and keep you warm:
Call in the chimney sweep – If you don’t have gas or electric or are trying to save a bit of money by heating your home the natural way, make sure that you prepare in advance and get the chimney sweep in. This will give you peace of mind knowing your fireplace is spic and span, reducing the risk of chimney fires and ensuring there are no unwanted animals nesting in your chimney.
Insulate in every way possible – Insulation is key for keeping your house nice and toasty during the winter months and is also less costly than having your heating cranked up full notch. If your new home isn’t already fitted with double glazed windows then make this a priority. Its amazing how much heat you can keep in by having these installed, instead of sticking with your old windows. Additionally, around 30% of the cold air that leaks into your home is through the pipes, vents or electrical sockets in walls, ceilings and floors. Pop down to your local B&Q and grab some insulant foam sealant and make every gap in your house air tight!
Have your boiler checked – Ask your heating company to come out and check your boiler. Routine checks normally only cost a minimal price and some companies even do them for free. Take advantage of this by asking them the best heat settings to use to save you money and keep the whole house warm. It is also a good idea to use timer settings so that you can ensure the house is warm when you get in from work and avoid wasting money when no one is in.
Clean the gutters – Give your gutters a good clean before the winter snow and rain sets in and becomes an impossible task. This will give you a chance to get rid of any plants or leaves that could be blocking them. Make sure that they all fit nice and snuggly against the house to prevent strong winter winds from ripping them off. Take the time to replace or repair any that are damaged or cracked.
Protect your pipes from freezing – This is a trick that not many people think of, yet one that will save you a massive amount of hassle in the long run. Minimize the possibility of water freezing or burst pipes by wrapping a blanket of insulation around them. You can get foam tapes which have a slit in either side from shops like B&Q.
Check your smoke alarms – Take this opportunity to check that your home is up to safety standards by checking or replacing your smoke alarms. Experts recommend replacing batteries in your smoke alarm at least 2 times per year, so for peace of mind get them all replaced and make sure that there’s at least one smoke alarm on each level of your house.
Make your new home as cosy as possible – Make sure that you stock up on lots of blankets and cushions. It doesn’t matter if your heating is on the highest possible setting, there is likely to be a slight winter chill in the air, so cosy up on the sofa with a warm fluffy blanket. Why not add a personal touch to your new home by choosing designs and colours to make it yours.