Preparing for Winter 2022-2023
Staying safe and keeping your home protected is always a priority when the winter weather, cold temperatures, and holiday travel plans start to unfold. Almost 50% of Americans plan to travel for the holidays this year, and millions have second homes where they spend their winters. Whether you plan to travel this winter or not, we all want to know what to expect in order to protect ourselves and our homes. If you do plan to head out for the holidays, we know how important it is to have peace of mind that when you return home, everything stayed just as you left it.
So what can we expect of winter 2022/2023? And how can we prepare our homes for the winter ahead?
This year NOAA predicts that the Southern US will have a warmer and drier than average winter, but eastward from the Pacific Northwest to the Western Great Lakes it is expected to be colder and wetter than average. That means it’s time to bundle up, both yourself and your home.
When temperatures drop, your pipes are at risk of freezing, bursting, and causing a lot of expensive damage to your home. Temperature changes can cause window caulk to pull away and create cold drafts – which could be making your home’s temperature drop, and raising your energy bill. A lack of humidity in the air in winter could cause shrinking and cracking of your walls if they are made of plaster.
So What Should You Do to Prepare?
In order to keep your home safe and warm this winter, we recommend doing your own home safety audit. Ensure that your attic and your pipes are properly insulated – doing so can make a big difference in conserving heat, help with home efficiency, and protect your pipes.
Be sure to check under doors for outside drafts and that your windows are sealed. If needed, you can use a draft snake, or replace the weather stripping. This can help you save money on energy costs, and your heating bill.
Invest in a humidifier and monitor and maintain consistent levels to protect your home from the dryness of winter air.
It is important to be sure that all appliances, especially your furnace and water heater are up to date, and maybe consider getting a backup generator.
What About Traveling Away from Home?
If you’re trying to escape the cold temperatures, or heading out to see family for the holidays – the last thing you want to come back to is freezing temperatures and bursting pipes in your home.
To keep your house safe while you are away, it is recommended to keep the thermostat set at 65 degrees Fahrenheit or above, especially when temperatures drop to 32 degrees or lower. It is also a good idea to cover all outside faucets, and leave indoor taps open slightly, so they have a continuous drip.
Monitoring While You’re Away
Remotely monitoring the temperature, power status, and humidity levels is one way to get peace of mind while you are away this winter. Being alerted if the power goes out, humidity levels rise or fall, or if the temperature drops, means that you can prevent a lot of major winter mishaps – like freezing temperatures, and bursting pipes, and save yourself a lot of headaches, and money down the road.
We recommend Meeting MarCELL and learning more about how it works, and how you can monitor what matters this winter.