Here are our 15 valuable tips for winterizing your Alaskan home.
Here in Alaska, it’s the time of year when we need to start thinking about winter. We have a few recommendations for how to winterize your home to prepare it for the long freezing months.
First, your indoor checklist:
1. Insulate pipes. If you have indoor water pipes that are next to an exterior wall, make sure you have foam insulation around them. When temperatures drop, it’s normal for those pipes to freeze.
2. Block off unused fireplaces. If you aren’t using a fireplace, put insulation inside to block it off because not only do you lose a ton of warmth through the fireplace, but a lot of cold air will come in too.
3. Get a digital thermostat. If you don’t have one, I highly suggest purchasing a digital and programmable thermostat. This will save you a bunch of money when you’re away from home.
4. Check garage doors. Take a look at both the large garage door and the one that leads to the house and ensure all the gaskets and insulation foam are tight. Quite a bit of air will leak through that part of your home.
5. Check the water heater. Ensure it’s working efficiently and that the temperature setting is right.
6. Change the direction of ceiling fans. This is one many people forget about, but switching the fan’s direction will blow warm air downward instead of pushing it up.
7. Clean out dryer vents.
8. Service the furnace. Have this professionally checked and cleaned before winter begins, and put on new filters. This is crucial; in Alaska, you should have your furnace cleaned every year. It will almost double the life of the furnace.
9. Change batteries in detectors. Both carbon monoxide and smoke detectors need to be in working order, and while you’re checking off all the other things on this list is a great time to do this too.
Now we’ll move on to the outdoor checklist:
1. Clean out gutters. Get all the debris out of the gutters so when spring comes and everything melts, you don’t have a huge water issue.
2. Caulk cracks. Caulk any needed areas on the outside of doors and windows so frigid air doesn’t leak inside.
3. Bring in outdoor furniture.
4. Disconnect water hoses. Sometimes people forget to do this, then don’t realize it’s a problem until spring when they see it’s fractured a pipe.
5. Blow out the sprinkler system. Again, freezing water left inside will damage the system.
6. Put stakes around the driveway. This is especially key if you have snow plows coming through in the winter; it will keep them from hitting things.
If you have any questions about this list or you’re considering buying or selling, please give us a call or send an email. We would love to help you.