6 Tips To Prepare Your Home For Winter

There are several things you can do yourself before the first snowflake falls to help you save on utility bills and keep your home and family safe.

HVAC System

Keeping your furnace in top condition is vital during the colder months. To reduce the risk of failure, call Artisan Plumbing Heating & Cooling for a tune up. For under $100, we make sure the unit is clean, replace filters and check for any carbon monoxide leaks. Replacing an older thermostat with a programmable one is something you can take care of to save on heating costs and you may be eligible for a free smart thermostat typically (valued at $249) through the NJNG Save Green Project. Outside central air conditioning units should be covered to protect against snow and ice. Window units should be removed or covered with inexpensive, insulated liners to eliminate drafts.

Windows & Doors

Preventing air leaks around windows and doors will increase comfort and lower heating bills. Examine and replace any rotted wood frames, add or replace weather stripping and caulk inside and out.

Roofs & Gutters

Water leaks and ice dams can cause devastating damage. Accumulated snow, combined with attic air leaks, can cause icicles to form or dam. Warming temperatures can allow melting water to flow into your house and cause structural damage. Consider installing an electric ice melt system to prevent ice from forming and allowing water to safely drain off the roof into gutters and downspouts. Don't forget to add extensions to downspouts to carry excess runoff away from the foundation. Falling leaves and branches can plug window well drains and overflow through basement windows. Remove all debris, make sure the drain is clear and install clear, plastic covers to provide additional protection.

Exterior Faucets & Hoses

Don't forget to disconnect all garden hoses, drain water from the faucets and turn off the shut-off valve in the basement. This will prevent your pipes from bursting as the ice expands. Your sprinkler service should be turn off and drained to ensure it is protected from freezing.