Home Inspection Insights

Lawrence M. Watkins, Specsure Property Inspections

5 Tips to Prep for Winter in Western New York


winter prep

The chill is already making its way to Western New York, giving homeowners a big hint that it’s time to prepare for winter. As a leading home inspection company in the Buffalo area, we know how important it is to ready your home and yard for the frigid weather to come. These five tips can help.

Tend to the Furnace


The worst time to find out your furnace could use some work is when it’s about 12 degrees outside. Schedule a tune-up before you need the furnace running in full gear. Tune-ups involve giving the furnace a thorough inspection, adjustment, and cleaning, touching on everything from the filter and gas pressure to all vents, drains, motors and other moving parts.


Cover Your AC Unit


Just because the Buffalo area home is done with the air conditioner for the year doesn’t mean you should ignore your AC unit. Invest in an exterior air conditioning cover to protect the top of the unit from snow, sun, and accumulating debris.


Scoop it Out


While most homeowners think of rain gutters in the spring, after the leaves fall is the best time to clean out rain gutters, removing debris that may clog the drains and cause water problems or even cracks from standing water that freezes.


Additionally, be sure downspouts remain clear and pointed away from the house. It is a good idea to check them monthly, even during winter months because they may be called into service during warm winter days when the snow melts.


Caulk as Needed


New caulk may be an essential step to prepare for winter, depending on the state of the existing caulk around your windows and doorframes. Remove any old caulk that has shrunk or cracked, applying new as needed.


If you see any daylight seeping in around your doorframes, you may need to go beyond caulk and add weather stripping and insulation.


Gather Your Winter Gear


Rooting through your Buffalo area garage or shed in search of your snow shovels, ice scrapers or leftover salt is not something you want to be doing on a freezing, dark morning after a huge storm.


Locate, inspect and setup your snow and ice removal tools where you can easily access them when needed. Store your salt, sand, or ice-melting materials in a five-gallon bucket, using a scoop to handily dole them out.


These five tips can help ensure your home is ready for whatever winter brings. And as a homeowner living in Western New York, you know winter tends to bring quite a lot.