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Winter-proof your home for cold weather

Keep warm, dry and cosy with our top tips for getting your home winter ready.

Updated

Green boots on the mat

It’s nice to be cosied up indoors when it’s cold outside, but not if everything’s leaking, dripping or draughty. Winterize your home now with this clever winter cleaning checklist and top tips that will ensure you and your home are protected from the coldest, wettest season of them all.

Winter cleaning tips for your home

Winter is a mucky season, with rain and mud causing mess and damp in your home. Our winter cleaning tips will help you tackle the main problem areas.

  • Mud seems to get everywhere in winter. Travelling by foot or paw, it gets trampled into hallways, trodden into carpets and smeared into floor tiles. Prevent the mess with a mat at the inside and outside of each entrance. Keep towels by the door for wet, muddy feet and use a boot or shoe rack where possible. If mud is already an issue, read our handy guide on how to get mud out of carpet.

  • Condensation loves your home in winter, especially the cold surfaces of windows, walls, and mirrors. Ensure there is good ventilation in your kitchen and bathrooms especially, avoid drying clothes inside, and maintain a constant temperature for your home over winter. Wipe down windows and sills every morning. If mould is already a problem, read our handy hints for removing mould and mildew.

  • Windows can collect a layer of soot and dust from fireplaces, stoves, and candles, so cleaning them will let as much light in as possible during the darker winter months. Dirty windows can reduce daylight by 20%, so it’s a good idea to clean them at the beginning of winter to enjoy a brighter room for longer. Our easy-to-follow guide on the best way to clean windows will have your windows dirt-free and sparkling in no time.

  • Declutter. The cold weather will mean you’re spending more time indoors with family or friends, so you’ll want to maximise available room. Store bulky boots on a welly rack and keep hats and scarves together in one place. Use our easy guide to decluttering to help you create a welcoming space.

Has your cleaning regime changed during the Covid-19 lockdown?

gloves, hat and scarf resting on the radiator

How to winterize your home

We’ve listed some helpful pointers on how to winterize your home and prevent those easily avoidable domestic disasters this winter.

  • Cleaning the chimney. Relaxing by an open fire on a winter’s evening is one of life’s simple comforts. But, as you’re about to be using your fireplace regularly over the winter months, you’ll need to give some attention to the chimney. A chimney sweep will clean the chimney, removing any obstacles that might obstruct the flow of oxygen to the fire, encouraging your fire to burn efficiently. This will result in your fire producing more heat and your home remaining at a comfortable temperature.

  • Clearing gutters may not be top of your list, but these canny water-catchers can become easily blocked with leaves and debris, often leading to penetrating damp and rot. This can be expensive to treat and highly inconvenient, so clearing your gutters at the start of winter is advised.

  • Check your heating system is working to its full efficiency by booking a boiler service. This will check that vents are clean and not obstructed, the filter doesn’t require changing and the thermostats are all working correctly for optimum performance. Keep an eye on your radiators and if they’re not hot at the top, chances are you’ll need to bleed them so your system works on maximum heating capacity. To increase your radiators’ performance, you may also want to flush it out. Not sure how to do it? Follow our easy guide on how to flush a radiator.

  • Improving insulation. Pipe lagging (foam tubes that fit around water pipes) will retain heat within pipes, save energy, and prevent pipes from freezing. It’s easy to fit and available from most DIY stores. For drafts, an insulating tape is a cheap and effective way to combat the cold and can be fitted around your window and door frames to seal any gaps.

You should now be armed with all the tips needed to ensure you have a snug retreat from the cold. Now that the indoors is done, why not tackle the outdoors with our top  tips to get your garden winter ready?

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Originally published