We obsess over spring cleaning after winter to clear out the season’s dust and germs, but it’s just as crucial to fall clean before winter arrives. Think about it; you don’t want to hunker down and shut yourself inside a dirty house for months. And you certainly don’t want the winter wind and snow finding their way inside, so learning how to winterize a house will involve the inside and the outside.
How to Winterize Your Home for Maximum Comfort and Lower Utility Bills
There are plenty of ways to winterize your home, from cleaning garbage cans to weatherproofing windows. Make sure to put these fall cleaning and maintenance tasks on your list so you can enjoy your home all winter long.
How to Winterize a House on the Inside
Wash and Disinfect Your Garbage Cans
Sticky, gunky leftover food always seems to slip between the liner and the can, landing at the bottom or “no man’s land” since no one wants to reach in and clean it out. Take advantage of mild fall days and use the garden hose to spray out the insides. Spray on an anti-bacterial cleaner or a mix of distilled white vinegar and water to disinfect the surfaces and let it sit for an hour. Rinse out, scrub any nasty bits, and let it dry before adding a new liner.
Vacuum the Undersides of Your Furniture
While we tend to make sure to clean the top, and even bottom, of our cushions, the actual underside of our furniture gets little to no attention. That’s too bad, considering dust and hairballs can happily live there for years. Take a minute to flip over chairs and even couches to evict these annoying air pollutants.
Clean Out-of-Sight Areas
Most of us clean the things in our field of vision, which is natural. ai, the tops of doors, windows, cabinets, and appliances collect just as much dust as coffee and end tables. This goes the same for spots down low, like baseboards and stair railings.
Clean Behind the Refrigerator
If you like this article, you might also like...
Request An Estimate
It is essential to clean refrigerator coils to help your appliance run more efficiently. Be sure to unplug your fridge before using either a brush or vacuum attachment to clean the coils, back, and underneath the refrigerator. If it’s been a while, clean the fridge inside too.
Make Your Entryway a Winter Barrier
Dirt, snow, slush, rain, and salt can’t enter your home if they can’t get past the door. Be sure to have plenty of rugs in front and behind your main entryway doors; a good-quality fiber mat will hold up nicely outside, and a washable rug works excellent inside. Winterize your home entryway by adding a bench or basket so your family members can drop their soggy messes right when they enter the door.
Clean Your Windows
You’re going to be stuck inside this winter, so the least you can do is have a clear view. Use a vinegar/water/dish soap mixture to clean your windows inside and outside. Wipe clean and polish with newspaper or a lint-free cloth. You’ll appreciate the extra sunlight come January!
Replace Your HVAC Filter
This is the easiest chore on this list, but one of the most important, especially if you don’t like having dust and dirt blow throughout your home every time your furnace starts. An old, used filter can’t trap dust and dirt as it should, and your furnace also has to work harder to push warm air through. Make sure to replace your filter every season.
How to Winterize a House on the Outside
Clean Your Gutters
Whether you do it yourself or hire someone, cleaning your gutters before winter sets in is always a good idea. Properly flowing gutters won’t let snow or frozen water accumulate, so you minimize the risk of frozen buildup that can damage shingles and eaves.
While you’re up there, inspect your shingles for damages or loose pieces and check that there is no debris underneath the final layer of shingles hanging over the gutter. If your home has a chimney, check that the flashing around it and the cap up top are secure.
Seal Your Windows and Doors
Even double-pane windows can still let those sneaky little gusts of arctic air into your home if the window frames and trim aren’t air-tight. Check where the trim meets the wall and the window frame and caulk any openings or cracks you spot. Storm windows are one of the best ways to winterize a home with single-pane windows, so check each window to ensure they are closed.
Check exterior door trim where it meets the door frame and the wall and seal any cracks or holes. Install weather stripping and door sweeps for significant gaps or cracks between the door and the frame.
Schedule an HVAC Checkup
Changing your air filter inside is an excellent first step to keep them running smoothly, but HVACs require routine maintenance that’s not DIY friendly. An HVAC checkup is affordable and available from local heating and air companies, and it can help identify problems before they start. The last thing you want on a cold January night is for your heat to go out — be proactive to stay warm all winter long.
Get Your Fireplace Ready
One of the best ways to winterize your home is getting your fireplace ready for the season. Even if you don’t use your fireplace as a primary heat source, having it in top condition provides ambiance and a ready resource in a heating emergency.
Give your fireplace a good cleaning, then inspect the flue with a flashlight for bird nests and debris. If your chimney and fireplace are ready for action, it’s time to stock up on firewood. In most parts of the country, a cord of seasoned hardwood should keep you warm all winter, even with prolonged power outages.
Our spring and fall cleaning service will erase the previous season’s gunk from your home. We’ll clean dirt, grime, and dust from places you had forgotten to give you a clean slate for winterizing your house. We’ll also clean your carpets and furniture with our HEPA-equipped backpack vacuums, which can capture up to 99 percent of pollen and allergens from your home.
Get your free estimate today to see how affordable and hassle-free seasonal cleaning and other residential cleaning services can be for your home. The Maids offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. If there’s an area we’ve missed, call us within 24 hours — we’ll re-clean it.