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Jarvis Restoration Blog

Preparing Your Southern California Home for Winter


If you read this blog title and did a double-take, we can’t blame you. Anyone who visits our website looking for restoration services lives in Orange County, which experiences winter weather temperatures that occasionally drop to the upper 40s. (Brrr!) We don’t get snow or freezing temperatures, and people sometimes go to the beach to celebrate New Years. Why would we need to winterize our homes?

The reason is … we do experience seasonal changes. There’s more rainfall, frost can appear on windows in the mornings, and temperatures in the 40s affect our homes. Since Southern California buildings are constructed without winter as a major concern, they often have thermal deficiencies that lead to higher heating costs, and they can suffer from cold weather damage they aren’t well-prepped to handle.

Here are some So Cal-specific home winterizing tips:

Arrange for heating system maintenance

You will need your home’s furnace during winter, especially at night, and it’s vital that the furnace is in good shape. You can schedule maintenance with any reputable HVAC contractor, and they’ll inspect and tune up your furnace. This helps avoid energy waste and catches potential troubles early. It also helps the furnace run safely. 

Have the ductwork tested

You probably haven’t even thought much about your ductwork, but damage to ducts leading to air leaks is a major cause of energy waste and can lead to a house becoming uncomfortable during the winter. Duct testing is another job you can entrust to an HVAC contractor. If they do find leaks, they can seal the ducts to make the ventilation system airtight and effective again.

Caulk and seal air leaks around windows 

As we mentioned above, So Cal homes often have weaknesses against the cold—and windows are the most vulnerable spots. We recommend you locate air leaks around the windows and seal them up with caulking. You can also purchase weatherstripping for sliding windows. Homes in colder climates usually need professionals to handle these jobs, but in So Cal homeowners can usually do the work themselves. 

Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors

This is a key winter safety step, as the danger of fires starting in homes is much higher during this part of the year because of candles, seasonal decorations, extra lighting, etc. Using a gas furnace also means a greater concern about carbon monoxide. Go to all the detectors in your home and press their test buttons to ensure they have power and are operating properly. 

Reverse your ceiling fans

Did you know that your ceiling fans can help you with comfort in winter as well? Look at the base of your ceiling fans and you’ll locate a toggle switch. When you change this switch, the ceiling fan blades will reverse direction, rotating clockwise rather than counterclockwise. Now the fan will push air down from the ceiling, which helps to spread heat quicker through a room. 

Roof inspection

Clean out your gutters, and while you’re on the ladder take a good look at your roof. Check for damaged or missing shingles/tiles that will allow rainwater through. The water may not drip into the living spaces of your house, but it can cause severe damage to the roof that may lead to you needing to replace it years too early.

If you do need damage restoration in Orange County because of the effects of winter conditions—or any seasonal conditions—we’re the local contractor to trust.

For comprehensive home restoration services you can rely on, contact Jarvis Restoration today!

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