Preparing Your Home For Winter: Part One

By Chuck Forman
The winter months are quickly approaching. Here in Colorado we will probably see our first snow by the end of this month, if not sooner. I have had several of my realtor clients ask me what they should do to prepare their homes for winter. This is a short list of items that I recommend to most home owners. 

1. If you have a furnace that does not have pilotless ignition make certain to light the pilot following the manufacturers instructions. If you are new in the home and you have never used the furnace before I would recommend having a licensed HVAC technician.
2. Change your furnace filter. This should be performed every 30 days.
3. If you have a home that has hot water radiators for heat you will need to make certain they are in proper working condition. You may need to open the valve at the radiator to bleed the air out of the system prior to operation. As soon as you get water out of the valves close them securely. 
4. If your home is equipped with a wood burning fireplace make certain the spark arrestor is secure on top of the chimney and that no birds or animals have nested within it. Make certain the damper is in good working condition. If you have converted your wood burning fireplace to a gas fireplace make certain the damper door is locked in the open position. You can purchase simple locks for these at most home improvement stores. If your chimney appears to a large amount of soot built up in it you will want to have it inspected, and cleaned, by a certified chimney sweep. Also, inspect your fireplace to assure that there are no cracks in the mortar that may allow heat to penetrate into areas that it is not meant to be in. This could create a fire hazard. 
These are just a few of the items that we look for on the inside of a home when performing our annual inspections. Next blog I will discuss items to inspect on the exterior of your home. 
If you live in the Denver metro area, and would like to schedule an annual maintenance inspection, please call us at 720-988-3387.
Chuck Forman