Maintenance activities – like going to the dentist, getting oil changes, etc. – allow us to save money, time, and unnecessary stress. One maintenance activity that can save you a headache this season is winterizing your cabin. Understanding the right steps will enable you to avoid potentially expensive and frustrating problems with your property. On top of that, the measures you take now will make it easier for the next time you go back. Ready to start preparing your cabin for the winter? Let’s do this.
Prevent Water Damage
The top issue when it comes to winterizing a cabin is preventing water pipes from freezing. This is an essential consideration because both PVC and copper pipes can (and do!) freeze, crack, and allow water to cause damage when a cabin isn’t in use during the winter.
Fortunately, that doesn’t have to happen to you!
The following steps can help you avoid water damage in your property:
- Turn off the main valves. This is especially important for the main supply point – where all water is fed into your cabin.
- Drain all the water lines. Open all the faucets in your cabin to let the water drain out. Along with faucets, you will want to drain the water heater, toilet(s), and expansion tank (if you have one). You may find that an air compressor can be helpful for removing the water from the lines.
- Insulate any pipes that enter the cabin. Along with turning off valves and draining water, you can insulate the pipes with regular home insulation, or heat tape.
Prepare the Furnace and Thermostat
If you are sure you’ve done a thorough job of removing water from the lines and winterizing your pipes – and you don’t intend on using your cabin during the winter – then you may simply turn off the furnace. If you plan on coming back to the cabin, a better option may be to turn down the thermostat. For this approach, set the temperature to 55 degrees, which keeps costs down but is still high enough to keep everything above freezing level.
Either way, winterizing your cabin presents a great opportunity to take some preventive measures that will extend the life of your furnace:
- Change the air filter.
- Vacuum the inside of the furnace.
- Check any belts for wear.
If you go with the “turn down (not off) thermostat” route, consider the potential for power outages. For this reason, the best practice is to make sure you winterize those pipes!
Unplug Your Appliances
The next step is to unplug your appliances. After all, it only takes a faulty wire, switch, or an uninvited rodent nibbling on some wires to cause a fire. At the same time, you also benefit by saving money. Even when not in use, some appliances use electricity if they’re plugged in.
Before you unplug appliances like your refrigerator or freezer, make sure you clean them out first.
Windows that aren’t properly sealed can cost you money in the form of your heating bill. But even if you are planning on turning off the thermostat, any holes or gaps could allow unwanted critters or insects to take residence in your cabin. To avoid this from happening, make sure you plug or seal any leaky windows.
Winterize Your Cabin – With Help from Godwin!
Your cabin is both an investment and a source of enjoyment and pride. Taking proper care of it now ensures the property will be ready for when you want to spend time with friends and loved ones or need a little rest and relaxation for yourself.
If you’re ready to winterize your cabin and are looking for the right products to get the job done, you know Godwin’s got it! Here are some that are helpful for winterizing your cabin: