Is your home equipped to withstand winter’s imminent arrival? Here’s an easy checklist to help you keep your home warm and dry.

By Nthabiseng Moloi, Head of Brand & Marketing at MiWay

There’s a nip in the breeze and a tell-tale crunch underfoot n the Highveld – yes, winter is well on its way, bringing with it shorter, cooler days and skyrocketing electricity bills. And while some parts of the country can expect to continue languishing in temperate conditions, others are set to be hit by a series of winter storms, which can cause enormous damage to property if suitable preparations aren’t made.

Luckily, there are plenty of simple ways to ward off the encroaching cold. With a little foresight and proper planning, you can ensure this winter doesn’t catch you unprepared. Here is an easy pre-winter checklist to help you make the most of the chilly season.

Check your house exterior

Before winter settles in, make sure you give your entire house a thorough once-over, checking your roofs and ceilings for cracks and any potential leaks to keep the icy rain from ruining your mood. It’s also important to clean out all your gutters once in a while in order to allow better drainage and prevent collapse.

Insulate your house interior

Most of us have simply come to accept that we’ll be expected to hand over most of our salary to Eskom over the winter months, but it needn’t be that way. In fact, you can save about 45% in energy costs simply by ensuring your house is properly insulated. By installing insulation in your ceiling, you’ll not only cut down on your heating costs this winter, but you’ll also reap the benefits come summer time, which will be made infinitely more bearable as a result.

Trap the heat

A well-sealed perimeter is key to maintaining a warm interior – by holding onto the heat generated within your walls, you’ll be able to save between 15% and 25% on your electricity bill this winter.

So make sure you seal up all visible cracks and gaps, using weather stripping around doors and windows to prevent the breeze getting in and the heat getting out. Heavy curtains and door snakes are also effective weapons in the war against winter, and by keeping unoccupied rooms closed you’ll also be able to more effectively keep the heat trapped where you need it most.

Layer up with blankets

Electric blankets eating into your monthly expenses? The good news is that there’s a simpler and more cost-effective way to keep cosy at night. By adding an extra blanket underneath your sheet, you create an insulating barrier between you and your mattress, upping the temperature without spending a cent.

Check the geyser

Winter without warm water can be exceptionally unpleasant, so be sure that your geyser is up to the task before the cold fronts start rolling in. Not only will a burst geyser leave you shivering, but it will also incur unnecessary expenses for damage – so check for leaks and cracks before it’s too late.

Remember this winter that it’s better to be safe than sorry, and that a little preparation can go a long way.

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