The kids are back in school and fall is just around the corner. So what do you need to do to make sure your home is ready for winter? Here are four important things to do, to get our homes ready for the upcoming winter!
Are You Ready For Winter?
- Shut down sprinkler systems. If you have an underground sprinkler system, fall is the time to blow out the water lines and shut off the water. Frozen lines can cause damage from leaks when they thaw, which then causes problems with your home, your garden and your water bill. Paying a professional to do this properly is a small price to pay for the security of knowing you won’t have pipe bursts in the spring.
- Clean the gutters. Once the leaves have fallen, make sure your gutters and downspouts are clear. Plugged up gutters and downspouts when we get a lot of rain can cause all manner of trouble if they overflow – damage to fascia or soffits, erosion of landscaping, and roof leaks which in turn can damage both the interior and exterior of the home. Gutters and downspouts should be checked at least twice a year (more if you have a lot of trees) and don’t forget to check the elbows and joints as these are prime spots for clogs to occur.
- Service the furnace and gas fireplaces. With cooler weather nearly here, we’ll all be relying on our furnaces and fireplaces to get through those chilly winter days. Have a professional service your furnace and gas fireplace to ensure they’re functioning properly. Get the filters replaced if necessary and ensure there are no problems evident. If there are problems, fix them now, before the temperature drops too much farther. There’s nothing worse than the furnace giving out on the coldest day of the year and this can easily be avoided, for the most part, if you get it serviced and repaired early in the fall.
- Buy some Ice-Melt, Sand or Salt. Keeping sidewalks and driveways clear of ice is important, not only for the safety of you and your family, but for anyone who happens to walk by. In Victoria, the City Bylaw requires that snow and ice be removed from the sidewalks in front of homes by 10 a.m. each day.
Even if there’s no snow, the sidewalk may be slippery from overnight frost or ice, so it’s important to keep it clear. Sprinkling some Ice-Melt, sand or environmentally friendly salt on the sidewalk only takes a few minutes but can save a whole lot of pain and aggravation later.
People who fail to keep the sidewalks clear of snow and ice may be fined $125 per day and the fines can be levied up to six months after the fact. If you don’t want to get any surprises in the mail, it’s best to keep the sidewalk clear. For complete information regarding the snow removal bylaw, go to the City of Victoria website and click on the Departments tab, then under Engineering & Public Works, select Streets.
If you need help finding your next home before winter arrives, call a real estate agent at RE/MAX Camosun today, at (250) 744-3301.
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