The first day of Fall is literally right around the corner! As we prepare to say goodbye to hot, sunny days until next spring, now is a good time to start thinking of how to prepare your home for the cool weather ahead. The needs of our homes change as the seasons change; for example: swapping out that weekend lawn mowing session for raking or leaf blowing. Giving some special attention to your home prior to fall/winter will help you be prepared to face those chilly days head on. I have compiled a to-do list to help you transition your home smoothly into the colder months.
- Inspect Doors and Windows
Be sure that the seals around your doors and windows are free of cracks to prevent air leaks. If you find drafts, caulk or weather stripping may be a simple fix that could save lots of money on your utility bill.
2. Test Smoke/Carbon Monoxide Detectors and Change Batteries
Smoke/CO detectors should be tested monthly and the batteries should be changed at least once per year. Now is the perfect time to be sure your smoke detector is working properly because most homes are sealed tight in the winter and heaters will be put to use soon.
3. Inspect Furnace and Adjust Thermostat
Check to make sure your heating system is heating as it should. Check for clogged filters and listen for strange noises. Be sure your thermostat is working properly and adjust it to make your home more comfortable. Also, if you have a smart thermostat, don’t forget to reprogram the daily settings to fit the temperature change.
4. Clean and Inspect Fireplace
Buildup from burning wood in your chimney creates a fire hazard. Clean out your fireplace/chimney and check for blockages in the chimney. Also, be sure the damper is working properly. For gas fireplaces, clear any dust that may be present and make sure the pilot light is turned on.
5. Protect Your Pipes
Be sure your pipes are protected from the cold temperatures. The cold temperatures can cause cracks in brittle pipes, potentially leading to leaks and water damage that no one wants to deal with. Insulating your pipes may be necessary.
This is the time to fertilize your lawn or plant spring bulbs. Bring inside delicate plants and seasonal furniture that cannot withstand the low temperatures. Close your pool for the season.
7. Switch Bedding/Clothing
Put away your summer clothing and bring out your warm, cozy bedding and clothing. If you start now, you have time to wash/freshen your bedding and clothing before using them.
8. General Cleanup
Check for accumulated papers or newspapers and other flammable materials and be sure they are not being stored near heaters.
Enjoy the last of the sunshine and heat while making sure your home is prepared for the chilly days ahead. Performing preventative maintenance now could save you from headaches and some potentially expensive emergencies later. You can now relax and enjoy the beauty of the changing seasons.
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Thanks for reading!