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Cold weather is coming - is your house ready?

One of the challenges of fall is that, in addition to finishing up all those to-do projects that were supposed to be finished by labour day weekend (like my basement reno!), it’s the time of year to be planning for winter weather. And for homeowners, that means weatherproofing and insulating our homes so we can stay warm, snug and keep a lid on our heating costs through the coming blustery months.

My checklist includes

  • wash and store patio furniture & the bbq
  • clean, oil and store the gardening equipment and lawnmower (empty the tank)
  • put the cover on the air conditioner
  • trim back and prepare the garden (see this week’s My Life- Home & Garden blog post for more specific information)
  • shut off outdoor water tap and put hose in garage
  • fertilize and reseed the lawn
  • clean the eavestroughs
  • check for drafts on doors and windows and caulk and weatherstrip as necessary
  • call in a professional to inspect my furnace and ensure that it is safe and clean to operate for the winter months.

I also like to put up the Holiday lights before the below zero temperatures hit although I usually forget and seem to end up outside on a day with record-breaking low temperatures!

There are even some bigger projects such as insulating your basment or attic that may qualify for money under the federal grant program ecoENERGY Retrofit.

For more information, many books on Home Maintenance at the Library have a section on weatherproofing. We recommend

Insulating and Weatherproofing
Time Life Books, 693.83 Ins

So what did I miss? What other jobs should we all be doing to get ready for the hopefully-not-too-long winter? If you’ve come across a great website of energy-saving tips or weatherproofing how-to’s, let us know about those too.