Winter Cleaning

Tips for Winter Home Maintenance

Many choose the spring season as the best time of year to give their home a thorough cleansing and inspection—thus, the commonly used phrase “spring cleaning.” Yet the winter can present its own challenges, demanding that equally detailed attention be given to maintaining a residence during the colder season. Energy efficiency, winterizing and holiday preparation and clean-up are just a few of the concerns that come up for these months.

Furnace filters are one factor that don’t receive much notice throughout the year but should be changed at regular intervals in the winter, according to HowStuffWorks. This will reduce the accumulation of debris in the air that results from the furnace being used more frequently. Cleaning measures are also important prior to decorating a home for the holidays, and the decorations themselves will go up faster if they were cleaned last winter before they were stored away for the year—an excellent tip to consider for next season. The site suggests washing artificial Christmas trees in the bathtub using a gentle overhead shower spray.

With the winter comes weather, and the source proposes some strategies for handling the coming snows. Making sure necessary items like snow shovels, scrapers and salt for de-icing are not only out of storage but easily accessible is a good thought to have in advance, along with stocking up on flashlights, batteries and non-perishable food in the event of a bigger storm. All of that snow can be kept outside where it belongs by adding some floor mats by the door or even baking sheets for boots, which keep dirt and snow contained.

Speaking of weather, The Hartford Courant recently published some advice on how to protect a home against those winter elements. Cleaning autumn leaves from the gutters can help to prevent ice from forming and blocking them, while insulating pipes or exposing them to heat by leaving open cabinet doors or allowing the thermostat to stay reasonably up during the night can guard against pipe freezes. Home owners can also pay attention to energy efficiency throughout the winter by locking their windows or using caulking to keep out drafts, closing the chimney when not using the fireplace, removing air conditioners and utilizing programmable thermostats to monitor temperature.

Happy holidays, and happy home winterizing, from William Pitt Sotheby’s International Realty.

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