If you’re like us, Fall is usually filled with a plethora of things to do – Fall festivals, wine walks, apple orchards and beautiful days to do just about anything other than work. We recommend taking a break from pumpkin carving to complete a few Fall home maintenance steps that will save you money in the long run.
Gutters and Downspouts
It’s important to keep water away from your home! Clean gutters and downspouts to prevent build up of leaves and other debris. Neglected gutters can lead to wood rot, pest infestations, and foundation issues.
Pro Tip: When its raining, go outside to make sure water is not coming down behind gutters, overflowing or clogged. Check for loose brackets or pieces that might have become disconnected.
Ensure that water drains properly away from your home. Pooling in the yard can cause damage to foundations, driveways, and walkways.
Windows and Doors
Inspect screens and/or storm windows. Touch up paint where needed for added protection from weathering and wear. Repair glass or latches while checking for signs of water or wind damage.
Inspect and repair any loose or damaged window or door frames.
Add caulking around windows and doors to ensure the winter weather won’t seep behind the trim and into your home. This can also help to prevent cool drafts that move through your home in the winter and raise heating bills!
Replace the filter in your furnace (you should be doing this monthly).
Have a heating professional check your heating system to ensure optimal performance and discover minor problems before you need heat not when you need it. If your thermostat operates on batteries, replace them to avoid a chilly interruption in your home heating!
Pro Tip: We recommend R-Mech Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. https://www.r-mech.com/
To prevent pipes from freezing and bursting, check your pipe insulation and add new insulation where needed. Fall is also a great time to locate and test your water shut-off valve in case pipes do freeze when cold weather arrives.
Be sure to disconnect hoses from exterior hose bibs to prevent pipes from freezing
Chimney and Fireplace
Call a professional in to inspect and clean your chimney. Fireplaces that are regularly used during the season should have an annual cleaning to prevent dangerous chimney fires.
Test your fireplace flue for a tight seal when closed.
Although grass stops growing in the fall, the roots are actually growing deeper to prepare for winter. Now is the best time to fertilize and reseed your lawn.
Prune your trees and shrubs after the leaves turn to encourage healthy growth.
Trim any tree limbs that have grown too close to power lines or the roof of your house. Most electric companies will also visit your home to trim trees away from the main electrical line if needed. Simply call your power provider to ask for details.
Winter weather back up plan
Now is the time to plan ahead for what to do in case of severe weather. Stock your home with helpful tools and products that quickly disappear from shelves when storms hit:
- Paw-safe and concrete-safe salt and sand for ice and traction
- Auto de-icer and winter windshield wiper fluid
- Ice scrapers
- Snow shovels
- Snow blowers (it’s tune-up time if you already have one!)
- Back up generators (it’s tune-up time if you already have one!)
Also take time to locate your:
- Water shut-off valve in case pipes freeze
- Fire extinguisher in case of chimney, fireplace or Christmas tree problems
- Copies of insurance policies, contact info and winter weather coverage