Prepare Your Heating System for Winter!

Prepare Your Heating System for Winter!

Winter is in full swing! Make sure your heating system is prepared and ready for the season with these tips. 

Before winter:

  • Check the furnace or boiler and have it serviced by a licensed contractor at least once a year.
  • Clean or replace the furnace filter on forced hot air systems.
  • Check the chimney and have serviced by a licensed contractor at least once a year. Make sure to remove creosote buildup from chimneys that are connected to woodstoves and fireplaces.

During winter:

  • Have fuel tanks filled and maintained throughout the season.
  • Do not set the heater lower than 55 degrees, as the temperature inside the walls where water piping is located is colder than in living spaces. Also, keep doors open within the house to maintain an even temperature throughout.
  • Service wood-burning or pellet stoves according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Inspect insulation

  • When too much heat escapes into the attic, it can warm ice and snow on the roof, which creates an ice dam when it refreezes. Ice dams can cause expensive damage or even a roof collapse. Guard against them by installing extra insulation in the attic.
  • Prevent drafts and heat loss by adding weather stripping around doors and caulking windows.
  • Install storm windows, if appropriate.

Check utilities

  • Check for water leaks and make repairs, if needed. If a water pipe is exposed in an unheated area, such as a garage or crawl space, wrap the pipe in UL-listed heat tape; use only thermostatically-controlled heat tape on plastic piping.
  • Learn where water pipes are located and know how to shut off the water supply in the event of an emergency to prevent damage.

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