Your Fall Home Maintenance Checklist
With Fall around the corner, pumpkin spice is making its grand entrance and boxes of decorations are coming down from the attic. However, fall home maintenance often gets overlooked. While cleaning gutters is not as glamorous as decking out your living room in all things fall, preparing your home for the upcoming cold weather seasons is super important. And can prevent minor issues from turning into major ones.
Speaking of Gutters
It’s important to keep your gutters clean and free of gunk that could clog them up. A malfunctioning gutter could mean water damage to the interior or exterior of your home.
Inspect for Drafts Around Doors and Windows
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heat loss through windows is responsible for 25-30 percent of heating energy use. But it doesn’t have to be. Check your weather-stripping around doors and windows, if you can feel outside air, it’s time to replace or add weather-stripping.
Fix Those Tiny Cracks
Do you have tiny cracks in your driveway or sidewalk? Don’t ignore them, fix them with some concrete sealer now, before they become more significant problems. If you let them go, water could get in there, freeze and expand causing more significant issues.
Change Your Air Filters
While you should be doing this monthly, go ahead and add it to your fall checklist and get it done. If they are clogged, it’s harder to keep your home at your desired temperature. Which means higher energy bills, and nobody wants that.
While you are already working down the list, go ahead and check to ensure your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are in proper working order.
One Final Pruning
Now that summer is on its last leg (maybe we are in Texas after all) it’s a good time to trim limbs and shrubs. The goal is to keep limbs and branches at least 3 feet from your house so moisture won’t drip onto roofing and siding. It also helps to prevent damage to your house exterior during high winds.
Inspect Your Fireplace
Now is a good idea to give your fireplace a once over before those glorious cold nights start appearing. To make sure your chimney is safe, grab a flashlight and look up inside your fireplace flue to make sure the damper opens and closes correctly. Open the damper and look up into the flue to make sure it’s free of birds’ nests, branches, and leaves, or other obstructions. There should be daylight at the top of the chimney.
Next, check the firebox for cracked or missing bricks and mortar. If you find any damage, order a professional fireplace and chimney inspection. Your fireplace flue should be cleaned of creosote buildup every other year. Calling a professional to do these for you is ideal.
If you would rather hire these services out, then complete them yourself, make sure that you find a professional service that comes with recommendations. Services like Angie’s List are a great place to start, and if you need any help, please give us a call!