CLEVELAND — We know Ohio has some unpredictable weather, so it’s important your home is ready to avoid a potential disaster. 

What You Need To Know

  • John Sizemore is a home inspector with HomeTeam Inspection Services

  • He has valuable advice to get your home ready for winter

  • Many of the tasks aren’t expensive and aren’t too difficult

  • Tasks could end up saving money in the long run

John Sizemore is performing a very cheap and simple task, but it’s a mistake people sometimes make: putting a cover over their AC for the winter.

"When we see it, we recommend people take those off and go with the plywood because we want to create the longevity of the mechanicals for people in their homes," he said. "Covers will probably run you around $35 to $40, you can go get a piece of plywood cut for you. Most of the time, Lowe's or Home Depot have scraps that you can pick up for a couple of bucks.” 

With our temperature swings that we have in northeast Ohio, build up of moisture on the inside, which will sit on the condenser coils, can potentially begin to cause corrosion and shorten the life of your AC. 

Sizemore, a Coast Guard veteran, has been a home inspector with HomeTeam since 2016, and he’s seen some crazy stuff happen to homes. 

"There’s been a number of things," he said. "I can certainly say I’ve seen quite a bit, generally it comes to structural issues, support. Probably the strangest thing I’ve seen was snake skins coming out of the concrete blocks in a basement."  

One simple way you can get your home ready for the winter and keep yourself safe is replacing the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, but there’s also a lot more.

Inside the home, that includes getting your fireplace cleaned by a professional. 

“You could have birds build nests up around your chimney," Sizemore said. "You could have bees that have built hives inside the flue, and the last thing that you’d want to do is have a sack fire, a flue fire by not having it cleaned."

Downstairs, Sizemore says to check the data plate on your water heater and consider replacing it if it's a certain age. He also encourages adjusting the temperature on your water heater if you're leaving for an extended period of time to reduce your bill. These are just some of many steps that can save you money and a potential disaster. 

“You could potentially be preventing several thousands of dollars in repairs," he said. "Certainly water lines splitting, not only mentioned if the water valves are not isolated, the amount of water that could poor into a basement and just ruin a home.”

This is just some of Sizemore's advice for getting youre home ready for the winter. 

"Helping people move forward with their homes is such a wonderful feeling,” he said.