Preparing Your Home for Harsh Winter Weather in Canton, GA

In an area that experiences many months of warm temperatures like the weather in Canton, GA and surrounding areas, homeowners often forget that it still does get quite cold during the winter weather in Canton, GA. With temperatures often dropping below freezing, it’s important to take steps to winterize your home. Fortunately, that is not as complicated as it may sound. Here are five areas where you can help prepare your home for winter weather in Canton, GA as we head into the colder months, helping to ensure a comfortable winter for your family.

Getting cold winter weather in Canton, GA? Stay warm by calling the pros at Russell Heating & Air.

1. Heating System Maintenance

Making sure that your heating system is operating reliably is the most critical element for winterizing your home. The best time to check your furnace and related equipment is by the end of October, when the weather in Canton, GA is beginning to turn cold. Here are some items you can easily check that can give you an early warning of any heating system issues. If any red flags pop up during your system review, you may need to call an expert to fix the problem.

 

Thermostat. Switch the thermostat to heat mode and set it to eighty degrees for testing. You should hear sounds as the furnace turns on, followed by heat blowing through the vents within a few moments. If it does not kick on or if the air is not warm, you should call for an HVAC service check-up.

Air filter. Replacing the air filter at least once every three months helps ensure that the incoming airflow is dust-free and contributes to a clean household environment. Be sure to change your filters according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Check the air filter once a month to make sure it is not accumulating dust, debris, or dirt. If it is, it’s time to clean or replace it.

Fuel supply. If your system uses propane or oil, ensure your fuel is topped off and ready.

Gas leaks. You can be alerted to gas leaks by battery-operated alarm systems or inexpensive test badges. Be sure to have these monitors in your home and test the batteries regularly. A gas leak in a furnace’s exhaust system is an extremely hazardous, life-threatening situation that a professional should handle immediately.

Exhaust vents. Ensure that vents are open and unobstructed for proper airflow. Blocked vents can cause the furnace to work harder, making it inefficient and increasing energy costs.

 

2. Air Conditioning System Care

When homeowners start experiencing winter weather in Canton, GA, they often neglect their air conditioning system because they are no longer thinking about staying cool. However, there are a few things you should pay attention to concerning your AC units as we go into the winter.

 

Clean and cover your air conditioning unit. Wipe down your AC condensing unit if it is accumulating dirt, dust, and other debris. If your unit has become excessively dirty, you might consider giving in an in-depth cleaning. Once it is neat and tidy again, cover the condensing unit using a breathable waterproof cover to prevent rusting and freezing of internal components.

Winterize window air conditioners. If you have a window air conditioning unit, cover it and close the vents to protect it from the elements while not in use.

 3. Inspection of Fireplaces, Chimneys, and Flues

Fireplaces and chimneys are significant sources of air leaks that should be inspected and serviced before you start experiencing cold weather in Canton, GA.

 

Clear blockages. Ensure the chimney is clear of debris and bird or squirrel nests.

Check the damper. Make sure the damper opens and closes correctly so that it can be locked.

Test the chimney draft. Test the chimney draft using several sheets of newspaper with the fireplace damper in the open position. Light the newspaper in the fireplace so the smoke rises into the chimney. If the smoke does not flow through the chimney correctly or comes back into the house, you should call for an inspection by a fireplace and chimney repair professional before using it.

Inspect the firebox in the fireplace. If you find any crumbling or cracked seals, be sure to repair them prior to using the fireplace. A fire may spread into the wall behind the masonry firebrick if it is used in disrepair.

4. Protect Water Pipes

Even though we have relatively mild winter weather in Canton, GA, water pipes are susceptible to freezing when the temperature drops low enough. Frozen pipes may burst and lead to expensive repairs. You can reduce the risk by following a few quick steps.

Insulate exposed piping. If you have exposed pipes, you can protect them by wrapping them with heating tape followed by foam insulating sleeves.

Protect exterior faucets. Cut the water supply to outside faucets that won’t be used over the winter, and disconnect any hoses that are still attached. Drain the water from the hoses and protect them with an insulation cover.

5. Seasonal/Intermittent Shut-Down

If you won’t be using air conditioners, water pipes, or other appliances that use water during the winter season, make sure you turn off the water supply. You can also drain the plumbing system to avoid potential freezing damage. Keep this in mind for rentals, vacation homes, or seasonal houses you won’t be using over the winter as well.

 

When the weather in Canton, GA begins to turn cold, you rely on your heating system to keep your family warm and safe. With the increased use of your furnace, the chance of it malfunctioning also increases. No one wants to be left in the cold when the temperature drops. Schedule your heating system check-up today with Russell Heating & Air, HVAC service in Canton, GA and serving surrounding areas.

Gary Russell