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winter house preparation

One of the greatest American writers, poets, and more “got it.” He knew that before you leave your home and head out into the world to make your mark, your house is where it all begins. Where your wife tells you what to do, and your kids demand another “donkey” ride on your knee.  He knew that that building was exponentially more than just walls, a roof, and a floor.

But, perhaps he didn’t quite touch on this beautiful place in which all these heartwarming things happen that validate every sense of what it means to be a man, a father - well, it kind of needs a little bit of looking after sometimes too. And as we head into the winter, never was there a better time to give your castle the once over to make sure that there are no lingering problems that can cause issues when the snow and ice come.

A lot of these things you’re probably going to get to do yourself depending on what your power tool situation looks like, but for the rest - don’t be a hero, your kids already think you’re one, get some help. No one looks good snow sledding in a leg cast. No one. So, let’s begin.


Let’s Start With The Simple Stuff

For sure, you’ve figured out by now that the highest (at least one of the biggest) costs you’re going to encounter during the snowy, icy winter months - is heating. So let’s get into the easiest and often wholly free ways that you can conserve energy in your home.

Strangely, many a “bloke” hasn’t figured this out yet, but it starts with closing your curtains early afternoon and closing all doors to rooms that you’re not going to be using at night or using very little. You’ll be surprised at how much heating you can save and keep circulating in the areas you’re going to be using the most, like your living room, TV room, kitchen, and dining room.

When it comes to regulating the temperature in your home if you get your furnace or central heating started in the afternoon. If you live in the northern states or, God forbid - Canada, well, your starting point will be significantly higher than elsewhere. Still, on a lower heat, by the time the sun sets, you may well only have to adjust the thermostat by a couple of degrees to keep pace with the madness happening outside. So plan accordingly.


Check Your Insulation And Add More If Needed

If you have insulation in your home, the expectation is often that it never has to be checked or maintained, and that’s not necessarily the truth. So before the cold really starts creeping in, get up into the roof or attic and double-check that your insulation is not damaged or too thinly spread. If you’ve had your insulation for more than ten years, it might be a good idea to get a little dirty and go and check it out.

This is also the time to check your windows, doors, attic windows, and other areas that are prone to let the odd draught in. If these need resealing, then do it now. You do NOT want to be caller # 75 on the coldest day in the year to get someone out to do it for you.


Storm Doors Can Save You Money By Preventing Drafts

If you don’t already have these, they are going to be your best friend this winter. They provide an extra barrier to the elements, and we find that they’re even more helpful if you live in areas prone to that icy winter rain because they offer that “break” between your home and what’s happening outside.


A Clean Chimney Is Essential For Fire Safety

OK, if you’ve never seen Mary Poppins with your kids (right), you may not get that reference, and if that’s the case, we’ve also just given you something to do on Christmas day - but get the original mind you. If you have fireplaces around your home, it’s time to get them sorted, cleaned, and “de-sooted.”

Or, if you’re feeling particularly handsy, you can make them yourself. They rose in popularity during the great depression because they can be made so inexpensively, and they WILL be your best friend this winter. You place them at your doors, entrances, windows...anywhere a draught can come in, and they work like an absolute charm.


Routine Furnace Maintenance Is Essential

Gone are the days when all the options we had were expensive mounted heating panels, oil heaters, and convection heaters that, while they worked, also worked a number on your heating bill. We have tech-made space heaters, fan heaters that are just about silent, and various other directional heating elements that heat specific areas for half the cost and are highly effective. 


Fix Any Roofing Issues Before The First Snow or Frost

All year long, you get to avoid doing that thing because you don’t really notice it, but mother nature has a way of awakening you out of your football-induced slumber, and it’s called: winter. But when will she remind you that you’ve been neglecting your responsibilities? When the first season’s snowfall comes. So now, before we even get close to that time, have a look at this roofing guide to gauge where you’re at in your roof matters.


So You’re Not “the Rock” 

Fellas, we get it. Not everyone one of us came out of the womb with a Black & Decker at hand, and sometimes you may be faced with a little something around the house that you have no idea how even to begin tackling. So for that very purpose, click here and get advice from blokes in your position that need some guidance or advice on how to take care of an issue best. And by the way, this is not just for DIY issues; it’s for the issues that men face from time to time but don’t always have some to talk to about it. Give it a go, real talk, from real men.

Written by:
#MenWhoBlog MemberBlogging GuruThought Leader

James' passion for exploration and sense of duty to his community extends beyond himself. This means he is dedicated to providing a positive role model for other men and especially younger guys that need support so that they can thrive and be future positive contributors to society. This includes sharing wisdom, ideas, tips, and advice on subjects that all men should be familiar with, including: family travel, men's health, relationships, DIY advice for home and yard, car care, food, drinks, and technology. Additionally, he's a travel advisor and a leading men's travel influencer who has been featured in media ranging from New York Times to the Chicago Tribune, and LA Times. He's also been cited by LA Weekly "Top Travel Bloggers To Watch 2023" and featured by Muck Rack: "Top 10 Outdoor Journalists for 2022".

He and his wife Heather live in St Joseph, Michigan - across the lake from Chicago.