Many people assume that major preparations are needed for winter, and every other season is mild enough that your house can wait until temperatures drop.
However, if you want to keep your workload down and prevent expensive repairs or damage, here are a few tips for maintaining your home in the fall.
1. Gutter Snipe
Fall is obviously synonymous with leaves falling, raking, leaf blowing, and general yard upkeep. While you’re focusing on your yard, look up at your house and ensure that your gutters and downspouts are cleared of leaves, debris, or any blockages.
If you leave the leaves in the gutters until it starts to snow, your gutters won’t be able to do their job. Do yourself a favor, grab a ladder and some gloves, and clear the detritus from the gutters and downspouts.
2. Leaf It
When you rake up all those leaves, and feel like you want to scream, keep in mind that those leaves serve a purpose. If you have a garden, you can chop the leaves and spread them as mulch, providing a lot of nutrients for next year’s soil.
If you don’t have a garden, and want nothing to do with the leaves that clutter your yard, put them on the curb or take them to a community garden. Someone could use them!
3. Pack It Up
As the end of the season approaches, you won’t be needing to water your lawn and there will be several times where frost coats your lawn and car in the morning.
Turn off the water spigot, unwrap your hose, and put it away. Also make sure you blow your sprinklers out, or call the landscapers to do it. You don’t want water in the pipes when your area has its first freeze.
4. Heat Things Up
Before winter truly arrives, test out your furnace and make sure nothing is wrong with it. Few things are worse than waiting until it’s freezing outside to only realize that your furnace is out of order.
If you have a fireplace, make sure it’s structurally sound, and make sure nothing is inside the chimney that would prevent smoke from clearing out.
5. Hunker Down
In general, use autumn as preparation for winter. If you live in an area full of wildlife, make sure your house and outbuildings are sealed up tight as many creatures will begin seeking refuge when it’s still tolerable.
Stock up on food if you live in a very intense climate. Make sure your windows and doors are sealed tightly, so you can conserve energy and heat!
6. Sure up the Shoreline
Many lakes have seasonal draw downs, meaning the water level will be significantly lower in the cooler months. This makes for the perfect time to work on any seawall damages that may need repairs.
Many times this is best left to a professional, and since this is the optimal time to make repairs be sure to book their services ASAP.
While this list is far from exhaustive, it should serve as a good reminder to never leave your house unsupervised until winter. By the time you realize there is a problem, it will be too late, and all the service pros will be booked until the beginning of spring!
Save yourself time and money now, and get ready for fall and winter the right way.