winter snow

7 steps to keeping your home safe this winter (and all year-round)

1. Clean out the Gutters

To prevent water damage and mouldy residue from entering your home, it is essential to clean your gutters at least once a year. You can clean your gutters yourself, and here’s how:

  • Find a ladder tall enough to reach the gutters; make sure it is stable and sturdy.
  • Wear protective clothing, especially gloves; remember you are dealing with rotting leaves and a risk of mould (anywhere water is present, mould may grow).
  • As you stand on the ladder, have one hand reach into the gutters and have your other hand hold the garbage bag. Make sure you keep your balance!

Whether you’re a busy homeowner always on the go or if you prefer to leave the cleaning to specialists, contact our team to help you take care of your home’s exterior. They will be able to provide you with affordable prices and exceptional service. 

2. Checking up on Your Windows 

To ensure you’re getting the most for what you’re paying for heating your home, walk around your home and check that your windows are not leaking cold air into your warm and cozy winter home. 

Start with checking the windows from outside of your home, to see if there are any holes. Once that is done, check your windows from the inside. Many people light a stick of incense (pick a scent you like!) and hold it still near parts of the window to see if the smoke blows. This will indicate any unwanted air leaks. 

Once you find that your windows do have some cracks, you can look into new windows that will ultimately save you on energy bills and make your home look even better.

Fun fact: Double paned windows yield the smallest chance of any leaks.

3. Maintaining You Irrigation System For the Winter

To ensure your irrigation system is ready for the cold winter ahead, you must make sure that it is properly shut off to prevent freeze damage. If you are the least bit hesitant on shutting it down yourself, you should consult a professional. If it is not shut off properly, and some water is still going through, it will freeze, expand and eventually break the pipes, resulting in very costly consequences.  

4. Why Every Home Needs A Shovel

If you’re not interested in snow removal services this winter, why not turn shovelling the driveway into a family activity? Include the whole family, it is great exercise and bonding time. You can purchase a shovel from Aden Earthworks. After shovelling your drive way, sprinkle a generous amount of ice-melting salt on the driveway to prevent an icy surface. 

5. Installing CO Detectors – The Silent Killer

Carbon monoxide is a colourless, tasteless and odourless gas toxic to humans. The only way to detect CO in your home is to install a carbon monoxide detector on every floor of your home. When you start your car and are warming it up, always do so on the driveway; leaving your car on in the garage fills up the garage with CO emissions, and may lead to poisoning. The newest detector models have a life span of about 5 years. Make sure to check that your detector is fully functional every year.

If you are asleep or if you are out and nobody is home, and the detector reads high levels of CO, you can have a system connected detector_installed in your home. A system connected detector will be monitored by an external station, and will send a fire truck to your home immediately if it reads high levels of CO.

6. Have A Safe Heating Source

Traditional fireplaces are a beautiful and festive source of heat, but pose safety risks if not monitored adequately. 

If you have a proper carbon monoxide detector that is checked regularly, you can purchase a space heater or a portable heater. These are more cost efficient for someone who lives alone; they are put into the busiest room of the home and work by heating up the room that they are in, instead of heating up a whole house. Make sure to follow all the instructions to prevent any accidents from occurring, and never leave heating sources unattended.

7. Be Prepared For A Power Outage

Recalling last year’s ice storm, power across Toronto and the GTA was out for hours, and in some parts, for days. Power lines were knocked over, preventing communication across communities. In cases like this, it is imperative that you are prepared an emergency kit. The rule of thumb is that you have enough items in your kit to last you and your family for three days. Necessities that must be in your kit are water bottles, matches, candles, and non-perishable food items. You should also pack blankets, flash-lights and maybe some board games to keep your family entertained, all the while feeling safe. 

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