Gearing up for winter – Tips !

One of the great joys of living in Canada is the change of seasons. Autumn’s colors and crispness will soon be making way for winter’s exciting first snowfall. Of course, one of the great burdens of living in Canada is the extreme conditions we ask ourselves and our houses to live through.

That burden can be lighter for both you and your house with regular maintenance. As good cooking and great paint jobs can attest, success lies in the prep work. Now is the time to get moving to ready your house for a cold winter and a wet spring. Here are our suggestions for a simple pre-winter tune-up.

Tools You May Need
Sharpened eyeball
The brunt of the weather abuse is borne by the roof and the exterior skin of the house. Roof

Get a ladder, a pair of binoculars, or a trusted roofer, and check the roof. If you have a sloped roof, look for shingles that are cracked, curled, loose, damaged, or missing. Repair where needed. Pay attention to the junctions between the roof and chimneys, pipes, and walls, for example – the metal flashings often need re-securing or re-caulking. If you have a flat roof, clean off leaves and branches, and cut back overhanging tree limbs. On the roof membrane, look for bulges, worn spots, or split seams. Flashings are important here also.

While you are up there, you should have a look at the chimney, if there is one. Brick chimneys may have missing mortar or loose bricks, and should have a screen to keep animals out. Metal chimneys should be free from rust.

Eavestroughs and Downspouts
While at roof level, be sure to clean and re-secure the eavestroughs. We cannot overstate the importance of having free flowing and leak free gutters and downspouts on the overall health of the house, especially the basement. If your eavestroughs can’t control the rain or melting snow, the ground will get soaked. Soaked ground means much higher risk of a leaky basement. Keep your basement in mind while you are dangling from the edge of the roof!

Follow the downspouts to ground level to double check where they dump the water. Above ground spouts should be well connected at the elbow, and discharge at least six feet away from the nearest wall, or at a point where run-off will be carried away from the house. For any house older than about 40 years, downspouts draining below ground should be considered for disconnecting from the below grade pipe system, and extending to drain above ground. This is an easy and surprisingly effective basement leakage cure in many older houses.

Speaking of the basement again, take a tour around the house to check how the ground directs traffic. Any and all surfaces next to the walls should be sloped to shed water away. Bad grading is another common and preventable cause of basement leakage. This is exponentially more important on warm winter days – melting snow runs quickly across the surface of still frozen ground. If the grading is bad, it will flow right to the house, and possibly right into the basement. Now is the time to grab the shovel and re-slope the grass, or call a paving contractor or handy person to correct a negatively sloping driveway or walkway.

During the exterior walkabout, check the windows and doors for any wood in need of paint, and any joints that need re-caulking. Check also the caulking at pipes, vents, and other wall penetrations.

Inside the house, we are going to need heat. Lots of it.

The most important pre-winter activity can be done by anybody no matter what their skill level, for usually low cost, in about 2 minutes: pick-up the phone, and schedule a heating system maintenance call. Even a new unit needs this check. The technician will clean the burners and fan, lubricate the moving parts, change the filter and check the operation of the important safety mechanisms. If the service is to be done later in the heating season, you can start on the right foot by replacing or cleaning the furnace air filter. If you have a humidifier you should clean it out as well.

Once we have heat, let’s do what we can to keep it in the house.

Weather Stripping
If you live in a new house, odds are good your windows and doors are well sealed. Old windows and doors, and even some newer ones, may need sealing to keep heat in and cold out. One approach would be to replace them. Luckily, great improvements can be made with simple weather stripping kits available at any hardware store. Due to the tremendous variation in shapes and sizes, we could write a novel about how to do this, but all you really need to do is to find the pre-packaged material that has a picture of your window or door, or something close to it, and follow the instructions.

Final Notes
The previous suggestions are the most important winter tune-up steps. Other good ideas include cleaning the heating grates, especially on the big cold air returns, cleaning and lubricating exhaust fans, and cleaning out the dryer vent and cover. If you have electric baseboard heaters, vacuum the dust off the interior fins, and make sure drapes and curtains are several inches above their hot surfaces.

Source – Carson Dunlop


334 White’s Rd Quinte West


MLS# QR21404859


This home is located just minutes to CFB Trenton and is located on a nice rural lot. This home features 3 large bedrooms on the main floor and 1 additional bedroom on the lower level. The master has a 2 piece ensuite . Laminate floors throughout, ceramic tile and hardwood on the stairs. There is a double attached garage, above ground pool and large rec room with wood stove .


Call or email to set up your appointment to view.



44 Greenway Circle, Brighton On Waterfront


MLS QR21405403


Serenity now! Welcome to Lake Ontario water front living. This gorgeous Voskamp built home sits on a wonderful waterfront lot with impeccable landscaping and stone work. Walk to shore and your very own beach that has crystal clear water and no weeds. This home features 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, a cozy living room with a propane fireplace and lots of natural sunlight. There is an attached insulated double garage with plenty of room for extra storage. A new furnace and built in dishwasher were both recently installed. Sit on your covered porch and watch the waves roll in. The waters here are great for kayaking, canoeing, paddle boating and kite surfing. You are only minutes away from the 401 , Town of Brighton and an easy commute to the GTA.

View of Lake Ontario


Covered Rear Porch

Living Room with Propane Fireplace


Open Kitchen with plenty of cupboards and pantry.


Dining Area with Breakfast Bar


Master Bedroom with 3 Large Windows overlooking the Lake


Beautiful Landscaping


Make your appointment to view this tranquil piece of property.



23 O’Hare St , Belleville On


MLS QR21405255

Looking for a move in ready condo townhouse with tons of square footage? This 2 storey townhouse has all levels developed. The main floor living room features hardwood flooring, the kitchen and dining room have easy maintenence ceramic flooring. The kitchen has been updated with plenty of cupboard space.There are 3 spacious bedrooms. A finished den in lower level. Single car garage with inside entry. Cozy private rear deck.


call to view!


5 Mohawk Ave, Brighton On – SOLD!!!


Come view this lovely 3 bedroom home situated on a beautifully landscaped lot. The double wide drive features all interlocking brick and an attached double garage.


Vaulted ceilings in the main floor living room , separate dining room and an eat in kitchen .


A private master suite with ensuite and walk in closet makes a great feature for this home.

There are 2 sunrooms , a finished rec room and plenty of parking .

Make your appt to view this home .


179 Nicholas St , Trenton On- SOLD!!!


179 Nicholas St
Trenton On

Come view this great home in fabulous neighbourhood located only minutes to CFB Trenton & the 401. This property features an open concept kitchen and dining room and living room. The kitchen has an abundance of cupboards, beautiful hardwood floors on main floor, ceramic in bathroom and foyer. Two bedrooms on the main level with a large master bedroom and a 3rd bedroom on the lower level.There is a finished walkout lower level with family room and a huge 3 piece bath. This is a carpet free home and move in ready. The Central Air was installed in 2010, driveway paved 2011 and the basement was finished in 2012.


This home won’t last so book your appointment today!