As winter takes hold it is important that homeowners prepare for the cold. Fill all the cracks and crevices in your foundation to prevent your home from leaking heat and making your furnace work overtime. You can use spray foam readily available at Home Depot or Lowes. Be careful with this foam its really hard to get off your hands. Have your chimney and fireplace cleaned and inspected by a professional Before the first fire of the season make sure the chimney cap is in place, and your chimney liner, firebox, smoke chamber , and damper are all in good working order. Clean your gutters and install ice shield to prevent ice dams and prevent melting snow from draining. Remove your air conditioner from window or use approved cover to prevent cold air from seeping in. Trim branches that are over power lines so if heavy snow snaps them you won’t lose electricity. For you people who have sprinkler systems for the lawn it is important that you winterize the system.