Winterize Your Home for Midwest Weather

Posted on October 14, 2011


It’s starting to become chilly around the Midwest. The October winds have arrived, the leaves are falling. Cooler weather is officially upon us.

Last weekend, we kicked off our Truth in Lending show in Kansas City and Wichita, KS by talking about winterizing a home. While we typically cover information about getting a mortgage plan, we want homeowners to know it’s just as important to take care of that home once you’ve moved in. It’s important to winterize a home for several practical reasons:

  • You keep your family safe … and warm.
  • You avoid fire hazards and other possible accidents.
  • You can save money by preventive checks on your home, and taking steps to service your appliances.

How to Winterize Your Home for Midwest Weather

If you’re looking for ideas on how to winterize your home, here are a few tips:

1. Have your heating system checked by a professional annually to ensure that it’s working safely and efficiently.

  • Change your filter monthly. Watch this video that explains how to change your furnace filter.
  • Replace your humidifier pad before you turn on your furnace – it probably has grown mold over the summer months
  • Consider having your duct work cleaned if you have done any major remodeling projects

2. Have your chimney flue checked for any buildup of creosote and then cleaned to lessen the risk of fire.

  • Creosote is a byproduct from the wood that burns; a substance that builds up in your chimney and is what flavors meat when you BBQ!

3. Make sure your home is properly insulated.

4. Caulk and weather-strip doors and windowsills to keep cold air out. 

  • Did you know that LOCKING your window will make the seal tighter and prevent heat loss?

5. Install storm windows or cover windows with plastic from the inside.

  • This will provide an extra layer of insulation by keeping more cold air out. Make sure to do this in FALL before it gets too cold – or the plastic may not stick.

6. Inspect and flush your water heater.

7. Clean your gutters.

  • Leaves and other debris will hamper drainage and may even be a fire risk.

8. Replace batteries of smoke, heat and carbon monoxide detectors.

9. To keep pipes from freezing:

  • Wrap pipes in insulation or layers of old newspapers
  • Cover the newspapers with plastic to keep out moisture
  • Let faucets drip a little to avoid freezing
  • Know how to shut off water valves

More Information on Homes in Kansas City

Well, those are our tips for winterizing the home – and why. For more information about winterizing the home, or to ask a home mortgage question for our Truth in Lending Show hosts, visit our website!