Protect water meters and pipes from freezing Take proper precautions when defrosting pipes and meters. Seal windows (or cover them with plastic). Then there are those ice makers so convenient. To make ice, you need water, and ice makers have a water line that goes into them.
This is probably the most overlooked element when people prepare their homes for winter. Disconnect and drain the water line from the ice maker, or better yet, find a refrigerator without an ice maker. If you have hot-water-based heating (or radiators), determine if they are charged with water or antifreeze. If they are loaded with water, empty them and refill them with antifreeze.
Then you can let the house cool down and not worry about it. If they are loaded with water, you are SOL. You have no choice but to keep your house heated. Winterizing a home is the process of preparing the property to be vacant during the winter.
You'll generally want to take these preventative steps this fall, before the winter season. Being proactive can help protect against the risks of damage caused by broken water pipes and other household and property problems. Since you won't need your lawn tools during the winter, such as a lawnmower or weed trimmer, it is recommended that you properly prepare and store them for the winter. Knowing how to properly prepare a house for winter is very important if you live in an area where you experience colder temperatures and snow accumulation.
Another task to do when preparing your house for winter is to make sure the chimney is inspected and clean. Assuming you don't live in a neighborhood where known thieves reside, notify your trusted neighbors that you won't be home for extended periods in winter. Since your house will remain closed during the winter months, it's important that your home's smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are clean and working properly. Homes are sometimes damaged due to cold and stormy winters, whether or not they are prepared for winter, but proper preparation for winter will stop “preventable damage” to homes, such as broken pipes, gas leaks, and more.
If you're not sure if you're following any of these winter preparation tips or they seem overwhelming to you, seek professional help. This is the time of year when many upstate players struggle to decide whether to prepare their home for winter and let it cool down until spring, or not for winter and keep the heating low to prevent the pipes from freezing. Connect a hose, place it outside the house or to a drain, and then turn on all the faucets in the house. The most common way for apartments to stay cold during the winter is through windows and doors that aren't properly sealed.
If you have a summer vacation home that you don't occupy in winter, be sure to take a fall weekend to visit the house and prepare it for winter. While preparing for winter and letting a house cool down will save you a lot of money on winter heating bills, it's not recommended for all types of houses. Last winter, while selling an empty house in Rochester, New York, the house's thermostat was not working properly, causing the pipes to freeze because there was no heating in the house. Old Man Winter can pop up at any time and wipe that cheerful, summer-eating Indian smile off your face, leaving you with what will feel like frozen toes and a frosty apartment.
If you plan to use your home during the winter, you don't necessarily need to drain and winter condition your house, but you should make sure the water is turned off before you get in the car and return to town. Learn how to help prepare your home's heating and water systems for winter, including how to help prepare your outdoor pipes and faucets for winter. .