The changing colors and cool autumn air serve as reminders that it is time to start thinking about fall and winter home maintenance. These little projects can prevent bigger more expensive problems and headaches down the road. The tips below will help prepare you for the cold months ahead.
This tip can save you time and money if it is taken care of before the cold weather arrives. No one wants to be in a freezing cold house with no heat. It is recommended that you have your furnace serviced every year. If there are any problems, it is better to find out about them now when the repair service is less likely to have a waiting list.
Clean Your Fireplace & Chimney
One of the best things about winter is cozying up next to a nice warm fireplace. But before you do, you need to make sure that the residue from last year's fires is gone. This is really important because the residue from the smoke is flammable. It is also important to make sure that there are no obstructions from debris, sticks, or leaves that might prevent the fumes from venting out of the chimney properly. A professional Chimney Sweep can help you with this. They will also look for any damage that might cause problems or malfunctions.
Check Batteries In Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors
It is always important to be sure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are working properly but it is especially important at this time of the year. Carbon Monoxide is caused by fuels not burning completely, including wood, gasoline, coal, propane, natural gas, gasoline, and heating oil. This can come from clothes dryers, water heaters, ovens, ranges, or a fireplace. Fall and winter are the seasons that we are using our fireplaces and space heaters. These detectors are your first line of defense so you want to make sure that
they are working.
Re-Caulk Windows & Door Casings
This is a simple DYI project that can save you up to 20% on your heating bills. Leaks from doors and windows let the cold air in and your warm air out. This project is quick, easy, and definitely worth it!
Fix Cracks In Your Driveway & Walkways
When water gets into cracks and freezes, it expands. This can make the crack bigger and even crumble eventually creating a pothole. You can prevent this with a concrete crack sealer.
Clean Your Gutters
The falling leaves of autumn are inevitable. As the trees in your yard drop their leaves, your gutters will get clogged up with dead foliage. Clogged gutters won’t funnel rainwater away from your house as they are designed to do. It is important to clean them out to prevent water from overflowing and damaging your home’s foundation, exterior, or interior. If you have a lot of trees, you will have a lot of dead leaves, so you may need to clean your gutters a couple of times throughout the season.
Rake The Leaves
Removing fallen leaves from the lawn helps to keep your grass healthy. A thick layer of leaves can deprive the grass of oxygen and sunlight, weakening it and possibly killing it. A few leaves won't hurt because when you cut the grass the lawnmower will chop them up and actually provide nutrients to the grass when they decompose. And with that thought, why not start a compost pile with the leaves you rake up? They will provide rich organic nutrients that you can sprinkle on your lawn and garden next year.
Plant Bulbs For Spring Blooms
Speaking of next year's garden, there is nothing like seeing spring flowers in your yard after a long cold winter. It can be hard to think of tulips, daffodils, and hyacinths at this time of the year but when spring comes, you will be so glad you did! The bulbs need several months of cool temperatures to bloom so now is the time to do it.
Make Sure Outdoor Water Is Off
Water left in your exterior faucets and pipes can freeze and burst the pipes. To prevent this from happening, make sure that your outdoor water valves and sprinkler system are off. Also, any residual water in your garden hoses will freeze and split the hose. To save yourself from having to purchase new hoses next year, drain them and store them indoors.
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