Winter in San Diego means holiday celebrations and warm family gatherings. It also means colder temperatures and lots of rain. Is your house dressed for the season? Here are some ways to weatherproof your home and save you some cold, hard cash.
Inspect Your Hot Water Heater
A 5-minute inspection can save you the headache of an unexpected surprise come winter. As temperatures drop, the need for hot water rises. To weatherproof your home, start with your water heater. Traditional tanked water heaters have a finite lifespan, so first determine the age of your water heater. If your heater is at or nearing a double-digit birthday, it might be time to think about upgrading or replacing it. There are several choices on the market these days, depending on which model best suits your needs. The next thing you want to inspect is whether your heater has any leaks or moisture on or around it. This can indicate a simple leaky faucet, or it can be a sign of a more serious issue. If you see any water leaking, make a note to call in a service technician ASAP.
Finally, consider adding extra layers of insulation around your water heater to lower your heating costs and energy demand from your heater. A little maintenance can go a long way in protecting the life of your water heater.
Find and Fix Faults in Your Foundation
Water can find its way into small cracks and fissures in your foundation. If temperatures reach freezing this winter, the water expands and can really do some damage. Walk around your property and inspect the foundation for low-lying areas that might be susceptible to pooling water. This inspection is best performed just after a heavy rain. If you notice puddles, add topsoil to level off the ground surrounding your home. Keep an eye out for any noticeable cracks in the foundation that could begin to worsen from adverse weather conditions. If you are planning to hire someone to repair leaks and cracks, take photos of the specific areas you would like to have repaired so they don’t miss a spot.
Empty Out Those Gutters
Cleaning out the gutters after autumn leaves invade is not high on many homeowners’ list of priorities, but it should be. Clogged gutters cause excess water to overflow into your foundation and exterior walls, causing rot, cracks, and other structural decay. Not looking forward to the job of climbing up and down a ladder? Check out this DIY video for an easy, ladder-free solution to cleaning out your gutters.
Maximize Efficiency by Installing Rain Barrels
Have you ever heard of pennies from heaven? Rain water is just as valuable in San Diego. Now that your gutters are clean, clear, and going with the flow, set up some barrels underneath them to catch some of that precious water. Rainwater harvesting has become a popular trend because the water captured can be recycled back into lawns and gardens for maximizing water use. Rain barrels also prevent flooding from excess rainfall in and around your home. In fact, San Diego is currently offering rebates of up to $400.00 per year for the purchase and use of rain barrels.
Spruce Up Your Interior For Ultimate Energy Savings
A fair amount of heat is lost through window cracks and points of entry. Consider investing in weather-stripping door jams and windows. Once your doors and windows are properly sealed, pick out some heavy drapes or blackout curtains to maximize heat retention all winter long. Area rugs are great for reducing heat loss through floors. A sealed home is a comfy home, and you can look forward to a comfy energy bill, too. After taking steps to weatherproof your home, you’ll have plenty of time (and extra savings!) to enjoy a wonderfully warm winter in San Diego.