The weather is starting to get cooler, which means it’s a good time to get your home ready for the upcoming winter. Doing basic home maintenance seasonally, not only protects your home, but can hopefully detect and prevent major costly repairs down the road. The easiest way to do your winter checklist is to take a top-down approach.
Start with the Roof
After the especially active and harsh storms this spring and summer, it’s a good idea to check out your roof. Look for any loose or missing shingles and check around fireplaces for any gaps. If you have a fireplace chimney, have it inspected and cleaned before you light your first fire.
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It’s also a good idea after the leaves have fallen, to clear out the gutters and downspouts of any debris and clogs. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this task, definitely look into hiring someone who specializes in these sorts of inspections and repairs.
Checking the Exterior
Drain and remove any hoses from the spigot on the side of your home. By not doing this, water could freeze and burst inside of your home. Don’t forget to drain your sprinkler system and any outdoor fountains. If you’re lucky to have a pool, you’ll want to take the necessary steps to close it up for the season too.
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Cover up outdoor furniture and store away any toys or tools you won’t need during the winter, including your grill. Protect your deck and cement by staining or sealing before the harsh winter weather comes. Wet weather combined with drops in temperature can create cracks in cement or destroy wood decking. Check out your landscaping for any branches that could pose a risk if there were an ice storm. Clear out your garden of any remaining fruits, vegetables, or flowers. Pull any debris away from your foundation to deter any furry or unwanted creatures from nesting during the colder months.
Focus on the Windows and Doors
Inspect the weather stripping on your doors and replace any that look ripped up or missing. Take a look at the glass on your windows and any doors. If you see any fog or water between the pains, chances are they need to be replaced. Check out the caulking around your doors and windows to see if there is any gaps, cracks, or shrinkage.
Stopping heat from escaping your home is going to significantly impact not only your electric/gas bill, but also help keep the wear and tear down on your HVAC system. During the colder months you may even want to consider a heavier fabric on your windows to help keep the cold out and keep the warmth in.
Don’t Forget the HVAC!
Speaking of the HVAC, it is recommended to have your heating system inspected before you turn it on for the new season. This is the same for your air conditioning in the spring. Keeping your system tuned up will help with the longevity of your system and prevent major repairs or replacement.
Taking on these four major tasks can greatly help protect the investment you call home. Being able to detect minor repairs before they become major, or even be able to have a heads up that you should be thinking of replacing something soon. Saving for a new roof or new HVAC on your own timeline can be better than an unexpected surprise during a very inconvenient time or busy time of the season. Not to mention keeping your family cozy, warm, and protected all winter long.
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