Fall is in the air, and the days are getting shorter and cooler. The change in weather is a great time for homeowners to take care of maintenance around the house before snow and ice make things more difficult-or next to impossible.
The following checkpoints courtesy of Forbes are great tips for making sure a home is ready for winter.
More than a walk down memory lane to childhood days, raking leaves is important for the yard. Too many leaves on a lawn over the winter can make it more difficult to come back in the spring.
Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Once the leaves have fallen, get all of the debris out of the gutters and downspouts. This will prevent clogging, which can cause water to pool and damage the roof or siding.
Make Exterior Repairs
Inspect the house for damage to the roof, siding, and foundation. Try and hasten any needed repairs so that they are finished before winter arrives.
While inspecting the house for exterior damage, also keep an eye out for gaps that could allow an animal entrance to the home. Mice only need a tiny gap, and when the weather turns cooler animals will begin looking for a warmer place to call home.
Take Care of Exterior Faucets
Prevent freezing of exterior faucets by shutting off the water to them before the temperature drops to freezing. Drain and store hoses indoors to maximize their lifetime.
Conduct an Energy Audit
A trained auditor can assess the home’s energy efficiency and recommend improvements that could save money in heating and cooling costs.
Schedule Maintenance to Heating Systems
Ensuring that the chimney and furnace or boiler are cleaned, maintained, and in working order before winter arrives is important to verify the effectivity and safety of the heating system of the home. According to a Las Vegas heating repair company, “Preventative maintenance is one of the best investments you can make,” providing invaluable peace of mind when winter arrives.
Remove Window A/C Units
If used during the summer, window air conditioner units should be removed and stored before the weather turns cool. If the unit must be left in the window, cover the entire exterior of the unit with an insulating wrap to keep out the cold air.
Any gaps around doors and windows should be filled with weatherstripping. This will help boost warmth in the home and help cut energy costs. Door sweeps are available and can be added to the base of drafty doors.
Check Safety Devices
- Test smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors, and replace batteries as needed. According to About Kids Health, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors should be tested once per month. Batteries in these safety devices should be replaced every six months.
- Check the expiration date of the fire extinguisher.
- Check radon levels in the home. Test kits can be purchased at a local home improvement store or online.