Autumn’s leaves have fallen and the first frost has passed. Yes, winter is coming, and it is time to begin preparing your home to withstand the cold, wind and snow of the long winter season. That means getting your garage ready for winter, too.
The long months of winter weather can be hard on your home, and that includes your garage.
Preparing your garage for winter may not be your first thought, but this space needs care as much as the rest of your home and property. From the electronics and mechanics of your garage door opener to insulting your doors and windows against the chill, there are several things you can do to get your garage ready for the winter, and ensure it is in tip-top shape next Spring.
Garage Door Maintenance
Winter cold can wreak havoc on your automatic door, so change the batteries and check for damage before the snow flies.
You may not think much about your garage door opener, unless of course it stops working. Keeping it working smoothly through the cold, damp of the winter is a priority, though, so start your garage winter preparation by checking your garage door opener. Make sure that the track is clean and properly lubricated, and change any batteries to ensure that they are sufficiently powered to run the door as needed.
Floor Care and Protection
If your garage is a basic one, simply housing your vehicles and serving as an extra storage spot, you may not have given much thought to maintaining your floors. Winter prep is a great time to pay attention to them, though, and the effort will pay off for years to come. First, clean the floors as much as you can; use a power washer to blast off grime, oil stains, and other mess.
A fresh coat of concrete paint will keep the garage floor clean and protected for years to come.
Once the floor is thoroughly dry, you can think about coating and sealing the floor. In most cases, a simple protective seal can be applied to help keep grime and oil out and protect the concrete below. You may also want to paint the concrete and specialized stains are made just for garage floors. Or you can have a professional floor coating applied. It’s a bit more expensive than the other two options, and involves several steps, but a professional company can complete the job in a day without difficulty, and the results are usually warrantied for at least 10 years.
Doors and Windows
Keeping the cold air out of your garage as much as possible is a big priority. Check your automatic garage door’s seals making sure there are no tears or other signs of wear. Replacing worn seals requires a professional, so make sure you check them early so you have plenty of time to get them replaced before the snow flies.
Weather-stripping and caulking are used on windows and regular entry doors, and they serve an important purpose, sealing out cold air and keeping the heat inside. Replace any weather-stripping that has cracked or dried out, making sure it forms a tight seal when the doors are closed. Scrape out any cracked or crumbling caulking from around the windows, then pipe in fresh caulking, filling all the visible gaps. Double-check the seals when you’re done by holding a lit candle or lighter near the seals, watching the flame for sudden movements that would indicate a draft.
Keeping the Cold Out
If you have done any garage remodeling, you probably already installed insulation on the walls and in the roof area. Most garage makeovers that turn the space into a livable extension of the main home involve installing insulation, but even if you have a basic garage that is only used for car storage or storing extra stuff, you may want to take the time and install some insulation to help keep the space warmer. This will allow you to continue storing any electronic equipment that is housed in cabinets or drawers in the space without fear of their being damaged from cold and dampness.
Warming Things Up
Besides insulation, you may want to seriously consider purchasing a heater for your garage. If your garage serves as a family space, man cave, or exercise room, having a small electric heater available to maintain a stable, comfortable temperature is a good idea. Gas-fired heaters are less expensive, but are more difficult and expensive to install. Another energy-efficient option may be a heat pump, which can provide year-round heating and cooling for the garage.
Preparing your garage for the winter is the best way to keep the space and your property in top condition.
Making the effort to prepare your garage for the long winter months is well worth it. Keeping out the cold and damp, as well as doing seasonal maintenance on your garage equipment and structure, will keep you garage space in good shape and will keep everything you keep inside your garage through the winter, and throughout the year, in excellent condition.
For more information about how Garage Envy can help you get your garage ready for winter, contact us or visit our website.