December is now here along with forecasted colder weather. Is your home ready for winter? Here are a few things to consider:
Does your boiler need servicing? A poorly maintained boiler wastes energy and creates added costs. It also runs the risk of leaking carbon monoxide. So, it’s a good idea to service your boiler every year. As everyone starts to switch on their central heating, the surge in gas consumption can lead to a big increase in boiler breakdowns.
Bleed the radiators: A great way to warm up your home is to bleed your radiators. This releases any trapped air, allowing hot water to fill every part of your radiator and warm your home more efficiently.
Guttering: We have had a lot of high winds recently and so lots of leaves have been falling from the trees, these can clog up the gutters. Once the blockage becomes too much, water will start to back up in the guttering and leak into the roof and down the walls of the house. Ask a family member to make sure your gutters are completely free from grime and dirt to minimise water blockage.
No entry for draughts: Those chilly winter will try everything they can to slip through the nooks and crannies of your home. Check the edges of your doors and windows for draughts, and you can either seal these gaps with self-adhesive draught strips, or get one of those funny draught excluders shaped like a snake or a dog.
Keep your pipes warm: Burst pipes are common during winter due to rapid freezing and thawing, potentially causing massive damage. The best way to stop this from happening is to keep your pipes lagged which will reduce the heat lost and insulate the pipes to stop them from freezing.
Sweep your chimneys: If your chimneys are still in use, make sure that they get swept every year. This will remove the build-up of dirt and grime from your chimney walls.
Stock up: Make sure you have a stock of staple foods in your cupboards and freezer so that if the weather is really bad you will not need to go out. Your CAREGiver can also help by getting some of your shopping for you.
Throws and blankets: Have a selection of throws or blankets around so that when you are sitting watching television or listening to music you can be extra warm with a blanket or throw over your legs. Bess, our office dog lays on her blanket near a heater/radiator when in the office!
Bonus tip: Stock up on hot chocolate and other warm drinks. It doesn’t matter if it’s pouring down with freezing cold rain, in the middle of a blizzard or gale force winds, sitting down on the sofa with a mug of hot chocolate in winter is one of the best feelings ever.
Hopefully this checklist may help you prepare for the colder months.