3 Things to Prepare for Before Winter Comes

 In energy, homeowner tips, Uncategorized, winter

We’re approaching the end of November and the temperature has been stiffly dropping. While we should all hope for a warmer winter than last year, it’s inevitable that the Dayton winter will bring with it temperatures in the single digits. We also know that when it gets that cold outside, things tend to break.

Sometimes there is nothing we can do to save ourselves from the problems of winter. Let’s face it, last year we had several days below zero that led to bursting pipes and roof problems. Outside of the home, we bundled up like Randy from A Christmas Story just to get to our cars, which had problems of their own from the harsh overnight temperatures.

With the area meteorologists suggesting a winter just as bad as the last one, how can we be better prepared? Where should we focus our attention? Why can’t we all move to Florida?

I can’t answer the last one, but here are three things you should focus on above all else when it comes to being prepared for the impending winter.

1. House

This is where you will probably spend the majority of your time this winter, so you need to be prepared. The first thing you should do before the critical temperatures start is check your furnace. Replace the air filter and bump up the heat in your home more than usual to make sure it can keep up. The last thing you want to do this winter is get a hotel room for the night because your house is freezing (literally).

Second, check all of your windows and doors for air leaks. New weather stripping may be necessary to maintain a warm temperature in your home. Feeling around the edges with your hands should allow you to find minor problems. In major cases, the hinges of doors leading to the outside can develop some frost on the inside of your home, so be sure to check those too!

In general, take a day and try to weather-proof your home. You obviously can’t prevent every possible situation, but preparing yourself and your family will give you an edge this winter.

2. Car

As I mentioned earlier, your poor car is probably freezing outside! If you don’t have a garage, your car probably went through a lot last year between the actual temperatures and the harsh wind chills. Sometime an old car just can’t take the cold, but there are a few things you can do to try and help it this winter.

The most overlooked and common maintenance to perform on your car before winter is to fill up your tires. When the temperature gets lower, the pressure in your tires is the first thing to go. Also, test the heat in your car to make sure you won’t turn into a Popsicle on your way to work! While it likely won’t be raining, be sure to check your windshield wipers because they could be very important when traveling down the highway through slush and disgust. And when you’re trying to get that disgust off of your windshield, make sure you have plenty of wiper fluid with a low freezing point.

Just like with a home, try to prepare yourself as much as possible to get your car through the winter, but don’t get upset should something unexpected arise.

3. Pets

I knew I was forgetting something! Your furry friend may have a nice coat, but even they can’t survive forever when it’s below zero outside. Always monitor how long your dog spends outside. If temperatures are unsafe for humans, you shouldn’t let your dog play out in the backyard for a couple of hours. They may think it’s not that cold at first, but even their fur coat sometimes isn’t enough.

When inside, try to keep your pets’ dishes in a warm location. Having their bowls right next to a window can leave them very cold and drastic temperature changes in their food or water can be bad for them. If your dog does spend a lot of time outside, then consider feeding them a little more for dinner. It takes more energy for dogs to stay warm outside so they will need the extra calories.

As a general rule, if you’re cold, consider how cold your pet is! Treat them just like family and you should all be able to make it through the winter!

Whether we want it to come or not, winter is well on its way, so I hope you take my advice and prepare yourself for the cold. Also, don’t think that the holidays aren’t a good time to buy or sell a home! Next week I will talk about Dayton Real Estate during the holidays! If you want to get ahead of the game, check out current homes for sale at www.DaytonRealEstateOnline.com. If you’re considering selling this winter, click the “Contact” button above and I will be happy to help! Good luck with your preparation and stay warm!

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