With the holidays right around the corner, that means winter weather is on its way. Up here in New England, we’re used to cold temperatures and frequent snowstorms but are you preparing for the coming season as best you can? The next few months can wreak havoc on your home and your vehicle, but there are a number of tasks you can do now to prepare.
Keep these tips in mind over the next few weeks to help keep your peace of mind once the first snowfall comes.
Preparing your home
As New Englanders, we know that the weather could feel like spring one day and then we could have a blizzard the next day. Because it’s so unexpected, it’s best to prepare your home now in the event of an early-season snowstorm. If you haven’t done so yet, here is a checklist you should run through to make sure the inside and outside of your home are ready to weather any storm.
- Check weather stripping around doors and windows for wear and leaks and replace if needed.
- Have a professional come to clean and inspect your chimney.
- Test your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors and replace old batteries.
- Perform annual maintenance on your furnace and make sure it’s clear of any fire hazards.
- Swap out screen doors with storm doors.
- Remover air conditioners from windows or cover with insulated liners.
- Consider replacing your thermostat with a programmable one if you don’t have one already to help save on heating costs.
- Clear gutters and downspouts of debris.
- Trim tree branches that are low hanging over your home or driveway.
- Check your roof for leaks and broken or missing shingles.
- Clean and store any outdoor furniture.
- Check handrails on staircases to ensure they’re well secured.
- Inspect the exterior of your home for any decay or insect damage and repair if you need to.
- Double-check that exterior lights are working properly to light up walkways at night.
- Shut off exterior faucets and store hoses for the winter.
Preparing your vehicle
Whether you’re on the road every day or your car remains in your driveway or garage for most of the winter, there are several things you should do this time of year to help maintain your vehicle. Winterizing your car can not only help keep you safe on the road but can help you save money in the long run from winter-related repairs and damage.
Here are a few things you should do now to prepare:
- Check your tire tread for wear, check the tire pressure, and rotate them each time you get an oil change. You may also want to consider snow tires if you live in an area with heavier than normal snow.
- Keep up with regular maintenance to identify any potential problems that could worsen in the winter months.
- Make sure you have enough antifreeze.
- Have a professional check your battery as they can often drain quicker in the colder months.
- Test your heater and have it fixed now if it isn’t working properly.
- Brush up on safe-driving skills like how to maneuver your vehicle on black ice and best practices if you’re caught in a snowstorm.
- Keep an emergency kit, ice scraper, and snow shovel in your car. If you don’t have an emergency kit already in your vehicle, you can learn more about what to include here.
We hope these tips help keep you safe all winter long. To learn more about your insurance policy options or to review your current plan, contact a local agent on our website. https://patrons.com/find-agent.htm