Prepping Your Apartment for Winter Weather
As much as many of us would like to extend summer (or fall) for another couple of weeks, the cold weather will be upon us like a blanket (of snow) before we know it. Before the first winter storms hit, make sure your place is ready to handle all the wind, snow, and sleet they have to throw at it by following these basic apartment “winterization” tips.
Save Your Money
It may seem an impossible task, but you can reduce your energy consumption during the winter months. Keep heat inside your apartment by closing your blinds and curtains during the nighttime hours and on cloudy days. If you have hardwood floors, putting rugs down will actually help to prevent heat from escaping. Additionally, you’ll want to keep your thermostat at the lowest comfortable setting. If you’ll be out of your apartment for several days, do not turn your heating system off completely – this could result in frozen pipes that will burst, causing flooding and headaches for yourself and your fellow residents.
One of the best parts about the winter months is that you can warm up under warm blankets on the couch while drinking hot chocolate. Consider investing in heavier bedding, such as flannel comforters or down duvets, that will allow you to keep your thermostat turned down during the cold nights. Keeping wool throw blankets on the back of your couch will not only add a cozy and festive touch to your decor, but will encourage you to cuddle up in it rather than turning up the heat.
Examine Your Windows
The windows in your apartment can be the biggest source of cold air leaking into your apartment, whether you have them open or not (and if you do have them open, only leave them open for a short period of time. Those frozen pipes again!). Put your hand near the opening to feel for drafts. If you have any concerns, speak with your Resident Manager about having your windows resealed or shrink-wrapped.
Another great way to help keep warm air from escaping your apartment is by hanging some curtains made from a heavier fabric or layering curtains, and making sure to close those curtains and blinds at night. During the day, blinds can be left open to help allow the sun to naturally warm your apartment.
Invest in a Humidifier
Cold winter weather means you may also be dealing with drier-than-usual air. Balance the dryness in your place by using a humidifier that revives some humidity into the apartment, says Apartment Therapy. You may choose to have one for each room or simply one for your bedroom and use it while you sleep at night — your chapped lips and dry nose will thank you!
Get a Sturdy Rubber Doormat
You may look forward to the first snowfall of the season, but after being outside all day, it’s easy to potentially track in mud, salt, and snow. You may want to swap out your doormat with a sturdier version to wipe your feet on before you enter your apartment and potentially keep a second doormat in the entryway where you can store your boots when they’re not in use. This may help prevent the salt and melting snow from being tracked throughout your apartment.
Winter Storm Emergency Kit
While keeping a basic emergency preparedness kit on hand is always a good idea, if you live in an area prone to snowstorms, you may also want to keep a separate winter storm emergency kit in your apartment. Some items to include are a flashlight, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, extra batteries, a first aid kit, a multi-purpose tool, sand, rock salt or non-clumping kitty litter to de-ice walkways, and warm clothing.
If You See Something, Say Something
Stay safe throughout your apartment building by letting your Resident Manager know if you see anything that could be hazardous to yourself and other tenants, such as a patch of black ice near the front door or large icicles near entryways. Spot a fellow resident struggling to get their groceries from their car to the front door in the snow? Lend a hand. Looking out for each other will help everyone get through the cold Canadian winter.
Get a jump start on these items now, and you’ll be ready to welcome winter and all that comes with it!