7 Tips For Closing Your Cottage
Don’t look now! But the summer is winding down and autumn is taking over. Long days of beautiful, sunny skies and warmth are transitioning crisp days, beautiful colours and dark, starry nights. Reality is setting in. Although you can enjoy autumn at the cottage, closing up the cottage is also around the corner.
Here are seven tips for closing your cottage:
1. Drain your pipes.
Completely drain all of your pipes and empty all of your water containers. This will prevent them from freezing and possibly bursting, during the winter.
Remember that water expands when it is frozen. Protect your plumbing system by ensuring there is nothing left in the pipes to freeze and cause damage in the wintertime.
2. Clean your gutters.
Leaves and other debris that clog up your gutters cause water to accumulate. This can lead to damage of your roofs' shingles, creating leaks. With clean gutters, rain and melted snow can flow freely.
3. Lower your heat.
Set the thermostat to about 10 degrees Celsius. This will help you to both save energy and prevent frost build-up in your cottage. It’s also wise to turn the gas off. If you use space heaters in your cottage, be sure to turn off their power supply on your electrical panel.
4. Unplug major appliances.
You don’t want to completely cut off your cottage’s power supply during the winter. Doing so would cause your alarm system, exterior lighting and sump pump to stop functioning. Instead, unplug your appliances and turn off the power sent to them. This will help to prevent electrical fires among other issues.
5. Inspect your septic tank.
Like many cottage properties, yours may have a septic system as opposed to a traditional sewer system found in the majority of residential areas. Before taking your cottage life hiatus for the winter, be sure to inspect your septic system in order to ensure it remains in good working order.
If necessary, hire a professional inspector. You certainly don’t want to contend with any water supply issues come spring.
6. Remove all fire hazards.
The last thing you want to have happen in your cottage, during the winter, is a fire. Pack up and remove any and all fire hazards. They include loose paper products like books, magazines and newspapers. You also want to dispose of old rags, chemicals and firewood. These are all items that could easily catch or spread fire.
7. Clean out the fridge and cupboards.
With no one occupying your cottage this winter, there’s no reason for food to remain within it. As you know, food can attract animals and insects. Even dry packaged food and canned goods should be packed up in sealed containers or taken with you when it’s time to call it quits on cottage season.
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