8 Tips for Winter Prep in #YYC

Posted on November 9, 2015

In Calgary, we’re known for our chilly winters accompanied by a warm chinook or two. These seasonal ups and downs can sometimes be challenging to plan for while still being an environmental steward, but we've compiled a few tips to help you keep up and chill out!

1. Clean out your gutters: If your gutters are full of leaves and other debris this can cause water to seep into your home, foundations, and/or places you don't want water to go.  Clean gutters will go a long way to ensuring that all that snow that melts during chinooks flow away from your house.

2. De-ice the green way: Conventional sidewalk and driveway de-icers often end up in our storm drains; flowing into storm ponds and rivers, and can be harmful to pets and children. Shovel snow early and often, and use clean sand to help with traction and attract sun melting.

3. Winterize your home: Prep your home for the winter by sealing and insulating your ducts, doing an annual furnace clean, and use weather stripping to ensure there are no air leaks. We have more info on saving energy in your home in our Energy Efficiency online guide.

4. Winter prep your rain barrel: Make sure water doesn’t freeze and ruin your best rain catching friend by removing the brass tap, turning it upside down to drain and storing it in a safe place. Read our Winterize your Rain Barrel blog for step-by-step instructions.

5. Don’t forget about the compost: It’s easy to forget about that frozen pile of compost in the yard over the winter, but it stills needs some winter TLC. Make sure to still maintain equal parts green and browns (great way to use those fall leaves), and water it during warm spells. Learn more from our Winter Composting Tips blog.

6. Water your trees: If the weather gets warm, give your trees a good drink. They may look dormant, but their roots are still alive and thirsty! They'll thank you in the spring when new growth will appreciate the water stored in your tree's cells.

7. Make room: When we have such abundance, we sometimes forget those folks that might not have enough food to eat or warm clothes to wear. November is a great time to clear out closets and pantries and donate canned goods that haven't expired and clothes in great condition that you or your family have outgrown. Lots of charities will appreciate your donations and your home will appreciate the de-cluttering.

8. Dump the junk mail: If you find yourself getting a lot of junk mail that's just filling up your recycling bin, there are some proactive steps you can take to stop that mail at the source.  Check out these tips to help you out!

As the snow flies, it's hard to miss the changing of the season. We hope our tips help you have a happy & green yyc winter!