How to winterize a house

A late-autumn checklist

As winter approaches, have your heating system inspected and serviced. If you have a forced-air system, vacuum the duct openings and lay in a supply of air filters. Make sure you have sufficient fuel.

Inspect your roof for loose or damaged shingles and !lashings. Check your TV antenna also. After leaves have fallen in late autumn, clean the roof gutters. Trim any tree branches that may damage the house or the outside wiring in a storm.

Remove or cover your air conditioner. Or remove the front panel, place plastic sheeting inside, and replace it.

Shut off the water supply to outside faucets; drain their pipes. Inspect and repair caulking, weather stripping, storm doors, and windows. On the first cold day, search for and seal hidden heat leaks.