Skip to main content

How to Prep Your Home for Winter Travel




Winter is a great time to cash in on off-season bargains and enjoy exciting new destinations without having to fight peak-season crowds. Winter travel, however, may require a bit of extra planning on the front end. Before you escape the seasonal drudgery for those exotic tropical landscapes, be sure you give your home the extra care needed to ensure it’s in tip top shape when you return.

The following cold weather preparation doesn’t take a lot of work, but missing important parts of this weatherization process could result in huge headaches and even bigger repair bills.

Before You Start

Before you begin your travel preparations, be sure you’ve completed your routine annual winterization. Some things you may need to check off your list include:

  • Closing your pool for the winter.

  • Shutting off your irrigation system.

  • Disconnecting and draining any outdoor hoses.

  • Closing exterior vents around the foundation of your home.

  • Securing or storing lawn furniture.

Once you’re sure your yearly tasks have been accomplished, it’s time to move on to getting your house ready for your absence. Here are some items to add to your pre-trip checklist that will give you confidence your home is safe and secure while you’re away:

Do Some Preliminary Cleaning

Before you leave, remove any old food from the refrigerator, throw some citrus peels down your garbage disposal, wash the dishes and be sure take out all the trash. A stinky house is not the welcome you want when you return to the realms of reality.

It can also be helpful to spend some time cleaning or replacing your cabinet shelving. Leaving crumbs and food particles around could be an invitation for rodents or insects to feast while you’re away. 

To lessen the stress of your return even more, consider washing your bedding and towels and doing a routine cleaning. It always feels good to come home to a clean house.

Unplug Electronic Devices and Small Appliances

Computers, microwaves, TVs and other electronic devices or small appliances continue to use energy even when not in use. Be sure to unplug unused equipment and anything with a digital display while you’re away. This will save energy when you’re gone and decrease the possibility of an electrical fire.

If you’re going to be gone for a while or if your house is easily seen from a road, install timers on your lights. A home that is dark for a long period might draw unwanted attention. Timers can be set to mimic your regular routine, making it appear as if someone is there.

Safeguard Your Water Pipes

Before you leave, turn off your water at the master shutoff valve and drain your pipes by running the faucets. This will protect your home from water damage if a pipe does burst despite the precautions.

If there won’t be any pets in the home, open your cabinet doors to allow heat to circulate around the pipes. If you have a bathroom or other source of water in an unheated basement or garage, you may want to wrap the plumbing with an appropriate insulating material.

Lower the Thermostat

There’s no need to keep an empty house at 75 degrees. Lower your thermostat to about 55 degrees while you are gone. This saves energy but is still warm enough to keep your pipes from bursting.

If you’re leaving a pet at the house, you may need to adjust for that, especially if they are older or have health problems. You can also leave them a big fleece blanket near a register just in case they get cold.

If you have a fireplace, double check to make sure all flues and dampers are closed. You may want to lower the temperature on your water heater for added savings as well.

Recruit a House Sitter

A house sitter doesn’t have to move in while you’re gone. If you have a trusted neighbor or a friend who lives close by, ask them to pick up your mail and keep a general eye on the place. You may want to give them a bit of cash — or maybe you can return the favor the next time they go away.

Another option is if you have pets at home, ask the person you’ve hired to care for them if they would be willing to pick up your mail. Chances are they will be walking by the box at some time anyway, and they probably won’t mind picking it up.

Preparing for a long winter absence may be stressful and a bit overwhelming. However, with a methodical system and good checklist, you can spend your time enjoying the sunshine and those umbrella drinks instead of worrying about what’s happening at home.


Comments

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Copycat Boston Pizza's Bandera Bread

Have you ever had a craving for something but then once you looked at it you realized, I can make that myself for next to nothing? That's how I felt last night I thought about ordering in some food but then realized I really don't want to spend any money. I really wanted pizza bread from Boston Pizza. So I recreated it and oh my goodness was it ever good. Try some of these great recipes too!  Pizza Bread Dough 1 cup warm water 1 tsp instant yeast 1 tsp sugar 2 cups flour  Seasoning 1 tbsp melted butter 1 tsp garlic powder 1 tsp onion salt 1 tsp parsley 1 tsp rosemary 1 tsp basil 1 tsp oregano 1/2 tsp sugar 1. Combine the water, yeast, and 1 tsp of sugar in the mixing bowl and let stand for 5 minutes. Add the flour and salt and mix until a ball of dough forms. Roll ball onto a floured counter top and knead for a couple minutes.  2. Put dough in an oiled bowl and let rise for 30 mins in a warm place with a clean cloth draped over top. While your doug

DIY Table Revamp - Guest Post

Hi all! I'm Tiffany from This Motherhood is Brought to You by Xanax and I am so excited to be a part of the Guest Post Swap and to be Amanda's swap partner! I love love love her idea on how to make indoor snowballs with egg cartons. I am definitely going to have to try that with my kiddos since my smallest one has decided that it has to snow for Christmas. Poor baby doesn't know snow is hard to come by in Alabama :( For my guest post I wanted to share a little DIY with you guys that involves duct tape! A few months ago my daughter's little chair that goes with her table she sits at every day tore and she made it worse by pulling all of the stuffing out of the seat! What started out as a quick fix turned into a great idea. She loved her seat so much that she has now decided that her table has look cool too so being the smarty pants that she is, she tore her table!

Amazing Ways To DIY Your Nails In The New Year

Having beautiful fingernails can really boost a woman's confidence. Not only do they feel sexy and sassy but they look well maintained and professional. There are a number of different styles of manicures you can get done professionally but they can be costly and if you are trying to stick to a budget and save money it is best to give DIY a try. These beautiful nail designs are easy to do and look fantastic. There are some that are more intricate and some that are simple but all will be amazed that you made them yourself. Try using small gems and crystals at the tips to add a touch of sophistication.  Tips make a world of difference and they can be as easy as you wish. There are so many beautiful polishes that have amazing colours you can match. These simple nail designs can be done by any busy lady and make a lasting impression to anyone who comes across them. Hot Beauty Health has all the instructions for these super simple nail designs. There are a large number