If you haven’t already, you should start getting your house ready for winter at the latest. Frost, snow, hail and storm do not only affect people in the cold season. What homeowners should check before winter.
“Several things have to be done now so that the property does not suffer in the wet and cold winter months," the Association of Private Builders (VPB) urges. The most important stages in the winter check are the control of the heating system and the individual radiators, the protection of water pipes against frost damage, the inspection of the roof and the repair of drafty windows and doors.
Check the heating system and individual radiators
Almost every heating system offers energy saving potential. Therefore, the entire system should be serviced by a specialist company once a year – ideally towards winter. “The regular maintenance of the heating by a specialist increases the lifespan of the system and lowers energy costs," explains the German Energy Agency (dena), for example. With professional maintenance, cost-consuming defects such as a too high flow temperature are noticed and can be rectified by the professional right away.
Check the insulation of the heating pipes and hot water pipes
According to the Energy Saving Ordinance (EnEV), all above-ground heating and hot water pipes must be insulated in most buildings. Exempt from the retrofitting obligation are owners who have lived in their property before February 1, 2002. In all other homes, “accessible heat distribution and hot water pipes and fittings in the unheated area" must be insulated. In your own interest, you should check the insulation of the pipes in the winter and have them repaired if necessary. With special insulation shells from the hardware store, experienced DIY enthusiasts can also insulate pipes on their own.
Protect water pipes against frost
It is also important to protect all water pipes in and around the house against freezing. Otherwise the frost can burst open the pipes. The best way to avoid such frost damage indoors is to never let the interior cool down completely, even when you are away for a long time, but to heat it at least minimally. In order to avoid any risk of damage, pipes in rooms without heating and outdoors with high freezing temperatures may no longer carry water. You can prevent this by shutting off lines in the hazardous areas and opening the tap. This allows the water in the pipes to drain away.
If a water pipe is still frozen, immediate action must be taken: turn off the water, open the taps and inform an installer. He will then carefully heat the pipes.Best Digital Marketing in PalampurThe Indian Fire Brigade Association warns that laypeople should never lend a hand with a soldering iron or radiant heater. With such first aid measures, many homeowners would have set fire to their home.
Check the roof for missing tiles
Especially in winter you have to have a good roof over your head. The winter check must be used to check whether the roof is properly sealed. “The last summer storms shook a lot of roof tiles," said the VPB experts. Individual bricks can easily be damaged and the roof can now leak. If moisture penetrates, the structure of the entire roof structure can be damaged in the long term or the wetness penetrates into the insulation of the roof, which means that the insulation materials are more difficult to insulate and mold.
“Damaged roof tiles should be replaced," advises the TÜV. You notice them with a careful visual inspection with the binoculars. In doing so, you slowly drive off each individual row of roof tiles one after the other, so that obvious damage such as a missing or moved roof tile is noticeable.
Observe the permissible snow load
But even if the roof has been thoroughly checked, one should not underestimate the burden of a thick blanket of snow.Like & Subscribe our Youtube Chanel alsoHouses can only withstand a certain amount of white splendor – permissible snow loads are what experts call it. It is calculated by the structural engineer during construction and every owner has it in his documents. If you lose the information, a civil engineer can re-determine the maximum weight. You can also get information from the local building authority. This can also help assess whether the situation is critical.Always keep the gutter clear On the other hand, home owners can work for the gutter themselves. This must be freed from the autumn leaves thoroughly. With flat roofs, the water drains must not be forgotten either. If meltwater cannot drain properly, it may penetrate the masonry. If it freezes there, parts of the facade can flake off.
Check facade and close cracks
The same can happen if rainwater penetrates existing cracks in the facade. That is why the building shell deserves a thorough inspection before winter. If there are fine cracks or if the facade has chipped in some places, you should repair the corresponding areas before the first frost. Otherwise, the cracks in frost may increase and subsequent repair measures become significantly more expensive.
Windows and doors are often weak points
Leaky windows and doors allow warm air to escape to the outside and the outside air penetrates through cracks and joints as a cold breeze. This wastes heating energy unnecessarily. If the windows do not close airtight, they should be readjusted, the TÜV experts recommend. In addition, the rubber seals should be replaced every few years. “Homeowners should also check the hinges on windows and doors and readjust them if necessary," advises the VPB. If the windows themselves are very old, it may even be worth considering an exchange. With modern windows you can significantly reduce the running heating costs. The so-called U-value (heat transfer coefficient) provides information about the insulation properties of a window. The smaller the U-value, the less heat energy is released outside through the window. Of course, as little warm air as possible should also escape through the doors.Like &Subscribe our Youtube Chanel alsoIf the gap under the door is very large, you can, for example, attach a brush seal to the lower edge of the door. In addition, there are a variety of other ways to stop drafts through windows and doors.
Check outside lighting
The VPB mentions the control of the outside lighting as the last big point for the winter check. “Glare-free lights should be installed on all paths around the house – and also work." House owners should pay particular attention to the lighting of external stairs, driveway and garage as well as all house entrances and the house number. Inadequately lit paths are a high risk of accidents, especially in winter when darkness sets in early and is slippery. Good external lighting also helps protect against burglary.