The loft is ideal for living spaces with its open expanse and raised or pitched ceilings. Unique to the loft is its position at the top of the structure in which it is built. This makes it vulnerable to the winter onslaught if proper preparation for the severity of the cold has not been done. Here are a number of things you can do to remain warm and cozy instead of praying for summer to come soon.
With the loft situated directly beneath the roof, it is crucial to perform an exterior check to make sure there are no problems that could get worse from the winter weather beating. Before the season gets brutal, check gutters for any obstructions so the winter rain and snow will not freeze forming an ice dam. I’d recommend Raleigh siding for any roofing or gutter repairs needed. Aside from concentrating on the cold, backed up water seeps into and damages the structure. Be sure any pipes that drain water are in good shape and carry water away from the building. Have the roof checked for any signs of repair needed to prevent leaks where the cold, rain or snow could invade.
Despite the aesthetic appeal of ceiling joists, their appearance is a guarantee that there is insufficient insulation to keep the interior space warm. You can layer over existing insulation for better resistance as long as you do not create a vapour barrier. Insulating the water pipes with traditional materials or rubber sleeves that come pre-moulded keeps you from creating disposable cash by paying more than you have to for utilities.
Furnace and Duct Inspection
Typically, an annual furnace and duct inspection will ensure your system is ready to work through the winter. It is best not to leave routine filter replacement and inspection for a potential breakdown in the middle of the season requiring an emergency service call.
Windows and Doors
Interestingly enough, the windows are the greatest weakness in any part of the house for their vulnerability to leaks causing drafts. A simple candle flame or burning incense with a stream of smoke may be used to detect drafts. Insulating window treatments provide another barrier to the cold coming off the glass windows. Storm windows, weather stripping and door sweeps also add protection from the cold. Any void in the walls or doors, such as outlets, cracks, holes or recessed lighting fixtures are sources for leaks. If windows or doors are in ill repair, the good news is the products available today are far superior than ever before.
If you have a ceiling fan in your loft, reverse the rotation. It is a little known trick that causes warm air to flow downward opposite to pulling warm air up and away from the living space as it does in the warm season.
If there is a fireplace with a chimney in your loft, the main concern is that you have a cap or screen over the top to keep invaders or foreign objects from getting inside. Keeping the damper closed when the fireplace is not in use helps reduce the cold downdraft. It is useful to inspect the chimney in the spring to make sure there are no obstructions.
These are some of the ideas that may help you keep your loft warm and safe through the harsh winter. While repairs can be costly, the return on your investment typically pays for itself in the savings on energy. The environmentally friendly products from which to choose will keep you comfortable throughout all the seasons.