Posted in: Homeowner tips

Winter home tips: How to survive and thrive on the coldest days

Ice dam on roof

Key Insights

  • At the very top of our list of winter home tips is the need for a roof rake, which can help prevent ice dams and other winter storm damage.
  • Stock up on essentials that can make starting your car and driving to work a little easier.
  • Don’t forget about easy insulation kits, which can help to minimize even the chilliest drafts from old windows.

Ready to survive and thrive this winter? We are here to help! Here are our best cold weather tips for home and car. Be sure to stock up on these winter products early, before they’re sold out at local stores!

Clear your roof after heavy storms

As January rolls into February, the volatile winter weather begins to take a toll on our homes — and those dreaded ice dams can begin to accumulate. Once the snow has melted for good, you can work to repair the primary causes of ice dams, which include blocked gutters or a poorly insulated attic.

But for now, you should invest in an aluminum roof rake with a telescoping pole. Use the roof rake to pull down large snow accumulations after major winter storms. By getting rid of excess snow, you can help minimize the damage from snowmelt that can’t drain through your gutters and downspouts.

Keep in mind that you should buy a roof rake before you think you’ll need it. They tend to go fast once the cold-warm-cold weather patterns of late winter roll through.

Prevent ice build-up on your walkways

As the winter drags on, the ice on our sidewalks and walkways begins to accumulate. While you can sprinkle the ice with salt or sand, or even try to chip away at it, another solution is to prevent the ice from building up at all.

Heated mats are available for sidewalks and stairs, making your early morning rush to the car a whole lot less stressful (and less dangerous). Beware that the convenience of free-and-clear walkways may lead you to explore the cost of installing a heated driveway in the years to come.

Make your car commute a little easier

Whether it’s shoveling yourself out, scraping the windshield or begging your car to warm up faster, many folks find that cars create the majority of their winter weather woes. To get through your winter commute unscathed, consider buying:

And if you don’t invest in a windshield mat, we have another low-cost solution to recommend. Vinegar can help to prevent the buildup of frost and ice. By spraying a 3-parts vinegar to 1-part water solution onto your car’s windshield and windows before you head to bed at night, you can cut down on your morning scraping time. (Just remember to keep the solution indoors so it doesn’t freeze inside your car.)

Insulate your windows with a quick kit

Yes, you meant to check your window seals before the snow started rolling in. Yes, you know it’s important to minimize drafts during the winter. We’re not here to judge. Fixing up or replacing windows can be super-expensive and time-consuming and sometimes, all you can afford is a fast fix.

Window insulator kits are perennially popular for a reason! They’re inexpensive, easy to install and they work like a charm to seal up drafts and keep your house air-tight even when the temperatures outside keep dropping.

Check out 3M’s window insulator kit, which includes five sheets to fit over standard-sized (3’ x 5’) windows.

Need help finding the perfect home this winter?

Ready to move south and ditch this crazy weather for good? Or maybe it’s time for a house that offers an easier commute, an auto-start fireplace or other cozy features that make winter a little easier to bear.

Whether you’re on your way out or ready to hunker down, reach out to Edina Realty or one of our agents. We’re here to help you navigate the next best step for you and your family.

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