Fall home maintenance checklist…..
The summer has come and gone, and all that is left are the memories of the fun things you did this summer. Kids are back in school, and as the mornings start getting crisp, what a great time to start thinking about home maintenance for the fall and winter months ahead.
As the last long weekend of the summer comes to an end, the pools are closing for the season and the family vacations have end. In the month of September you notice the crisp smell of the air, the days are getting shorter, and our schedules are getting busier with kids back to school activities.
We have all heard of “Spring Cleaning” and “Fall Cleaning”, but did you notice that people aren’t as willing to get started in the fall as in the spring? We now the shorter and colder days are upon us.
Here is a list of things to think about for fall maintenance for your home, “Your Fall Home Checklist”.
Check or add weatherstripping to doors and windows
You want to keep the warm cozy air in your home and save on your heating cost, weatherstripping is a great way to help do that. There are many types of weather stripping, from plastic to foam. Check around your doors and windows, the place where most cold air with sneak in. Check to make sure it’s not cracked or missing. The bottom of doors is the biggest culprit for letting cold air sneak into your home. Check your local hardware store, they now offer many styles of sweeps, gaskets, or thresholds that are made to seal the bottom of doors. If you have the new energy efficient windows in your home, more then likely you won’t need to seal them, however, if you have the old wooden single pain windows, they can get a bit drafty and increase your energy cost. (EHow: Great tips and video’s to help you with weatherstripping)
Caulk is just weatherstripping in a tube. Check the corners, windows, doors, vents, and so on. Any area that could have a gap and would allow cold air to get in. (EHow: Great tips and video’s on Caulking the Exterior)
Old Windows..Storm Windows
As we mentioned before in the weatherstripping section, if you have old windows then you will have storm windows to help keep the cold out. Before you put them back in or pull them down, depending on how yours are set up, you will want to clean them and make sure there aren’t any cracks in them. If they are cracked this is a great time to get them repaired or replaced, before Old Man Winter is here.
Insulation Check and Install
The amount you spend in insulation will be well worth the savings on your heating (will also help save in the summer months). The older homes that were built before the current building codes for insulation, will be thankful they took the time to add insulation. Most older homes have little to no insulation at the time they were built. Insulate your unfinished attic space and the open ceilings in unfinished basements. Make sure the you install it the proper way for the best results. (EHow: Great tips and video’s to help with insulation install)
Make sure you check your gutters a few times as leaves start falling to make sure they are clear of leaves and debris. You will be thankful you did when the cold weather hits and the snow starts falling. Clogged gutters will prevent the melting snow to run off your roof and freeze up over night when the temperatures drop below freezing. To much ice in gutters can also cause roof damage. A few hours in the fall could save you a few $1,000 in the Spring.
If you have a wood stove (also true for coal or pellet) now is a good time to start stocking up on wood, coal or pellets for the winter.
Is your roof and chimney ready?
If your able to do this yourself check your roof for missing or broken shingles, inspect the flashing and seals around vent pipes and chimneys, and the wood around the eaves to make sure it’s not damaged or rotted.
Check your chimney to make sure nothing has made a home in it, installing a chimney cap will help prevent this. Also make sure your chimney is cleaned to avoid a chimney fire when the heating months start.
If you aren’t able to do this yourself contact local professionals in your area. It’s well worth the investment.