With colder weather just around the corner, now is the time to prepare your home for winter. Here are some helpful fall home maintenance reminders to prep your home.
INDOOR FALL MAINTENANCE REMINDERS
Radon: If you haven’t already, test your home for radon. It is more likely to get trapped in your home when windows and doors stay shut more often. High levels of radon are harmful.
Dryer vents: Fall is a good time to clean the dryer vents of built up lint. Since static electricity increases in the cooler/dryer months, cleaning the vents can help reduce the risk of a fire.
Pipes: Insulate pipes in unheated interior spaces such as attics and basements. A burst pipe can cost you thousands of dollars in water damage.
Oven: Run the self-cleaning cycle on your oven before it gets too cold. That way you can open windows and air out your kitchen.
Ceiling fans: Change direction to clockwise to create an updraft, that circulates rising heat.
Heating system: Have your HVAC system inspected and serviced. Change the furnace filter.
Fireplace and chimney: Clean and prepare your fireplace and chimney. Add a chimney cap to avoid critters from crawling down the chimney.
Windows and doors: Reseal/caulk drafty windows and doors. Add a door sweep to help keep the cold air out.
Smoke and CO monitors: Change the batteries and test your smoke/CO monitors.
Water heater: If you have an older hot water heater, insulating it can help prevent heat loss and save energy and money.
OUTDOOR FALL MAINTENANCE REMINDERS
Acrylic and latex paint/caulk: Bring these items in from the garage to store, since freezing will ruin any acrylic or latex paint/caulk.
Cracks: Check your outdoor steps, walkways and driveway for cracks to fill to prevent freezing water from expanding them.
Exterior faucets and drain hoses: Prevent damage and drain all outdoor pipes such as sprinkler systems and outdoor hoses.
Grass: At the last cutting, at the end of the growing season in late fall prior to winter, cut grass to 2″. Aerate and fertilize your lawn. Perforating small holes in the soil can help alleviate compaction and allow grass roots to attain more air, nutrients and water. Fertilize before 1st freeze to replace nutrients lost from soil during the hot summer. It will remain in soil and feed roots all winter.
Trees: After the leaves fall off and before the first freeze, generously water your trees. Trim any dead branches or limbs over your roof that could fall during a snowstorm.
Gaps and holes: Inspect the exterior of your house for any gaps and holes to seal. Critters will be looking for a warm place to stay during winter.
Gutters: As Autumn leaves begin to fall, keep the gutters and downspouts cleaned.
Rake leaves: Too many leaves in an area can inhibit spring growth.
Recommended for you:
Little-Known Ways to Make Your Home Feel Warm, Cozy and Inviting
10 Helpful Tips to Protect Your Home (and Wallet) this Winter
Purchasing a Home in Oconomowoc: How Buyers Can Succeed in a Constricted Market