Colorado winters are known to be rather unpredictable. As it is said by locals, “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a few hours”. Certainly we have seen sunny days turn into storms, and inches of ice and snow vanish within twenty-four hours. If you have made the Greater Denver area your home recently, you may not be used to this type of weather. Here are a few tips to help you recent transplants out.
Preventing Frozen Pipes
Unless you are in the high country (mountains), we don’t typically have several days in a row of cold, freezing weather. This means frozen pipes don’t happen very often- which is a blessing and a curse. It is a blessing because water damage is devastating, and a curse because we can forget to take proper preventative measures.
If you live in the mountains, have a second home in the mountains, or plan on being away from your home for more than a few days, you will want to prepare your home to handle a cold snap that could snap your pipes.
Make sure the pipes on the north side of your home are properly insulated.
Keep cabinet doors open to allow the overall living space heat to reach the pipes (if it’s under 20 degrees outside).
Mark your emergency water shut off and let your house sitters and/or neighbors know where to find it.
Keep your thermostat set above 55 degrees.
Make sure your outdoor spigots have the hose removed and have been drained.
Because our weather is so unpredictable, we have seen snow in October, May and everywhere in between. Having your furnace tuned and cleaned earlier in the season will save you time and money.
Take advantage of beginning and end of season discount specials. There really is no bad time to make sure your furnace is running at optimum, especially when no one knows when our winter season will stop or start.
Keep your filters clean by changing them every six months.
Consider an energy audit of your home to look for areas of heat loss such as windows, doors, attics and vents. Make repairs as recommended.
Make sure your water heater can keep up with your demand for hot water through the cold months. The size and output needed will depend on your needs. Get a water heater tune up and talk to your plumber about options, including tankless, that can save you money over the long run in improved efficiency.
Check your carbon monoxide batteries, and your smoke detector batteries every time you change your furnace filters.
Have a bag filled with winter safety items that you can carry to your car when you know you will be traveling more than an hour. It should include water, snacks, extra blankets, matches and more, depending on your family’s need. Check out the Farmer’s Almanac for more ideas.
In Colorado, three additional whole house systems can bring another level of comfort to your home: a humidifier, a water purification system and duct UV air purifiers. Plumbers and HVAC professionals can talk to you more about each of these options to help you beat the dry air in Colorado.
Consider a whole house humidifier and/or water filtration system if you experience dry, uncomfortable skin and static. Denver is a very dry place, and many people moving here don’t expect the lack of humidity to be so uncomfortable in the winter. Sometimes a water purification system can help your water taste better as well as feel better on your chapped skin. A humidifier can add moisture to the air to help reduce static while a UV air purifier can remove allergens and kill airborne bacteria in your ducts.
Colorado is truly a beautiful place to live and we are glad you are here. Enjoy the wonderful views, and if the dry, cold weather becomes too much for you, give us a call – we want to make you smile today!