Fall is also a great time to take care of the little things that can make a big difference for you and your home. Most of these items are within the average person’s ability, but even if you choose to have a professional handle them it is well worth the expense. We even have a couple very reasonable handymen that we can refer!
- Get your mind in the gutters. Inspect and clean gutters and downspouts.
- Button up your overcoat. Seal gaps and cracks around windows and doors with weather-stripping and caulk.
- Get on top of roof problems. Inspect your roof for damaged or curled shingles, corroded flashing, or leaky vents.
- Walk the walk. Take steps to repair damaged sidewalks, driveways, and steps.
- Get out the Rake. Blow or rake leaves and shred to use as mulch or dispose of them based on local guidelines.
- Prune your plants. Late fall is the best time to prune plants and trees, when the summer growth cycle is over.
- Going Green. Fall is a good time to aerate your lawn; it will allow moisture and nutrients to get into the roots. When you’re done, spread fertilizer then grass seed. This will be the ideal time to sow cool-season grasses such as fescue and rye – it will give them the opportunity to germinate and develop a good root system before freezing temperatures arrive.
- Don’t Be a Drip. Drain and winterize outdoor faucets and irrigation systems. Remove hoses from spigots to drain and store indoors, coiled and flat.
- Bring it In. Store outdoor furniture and cushions.
- Add the Extra Layer. Close or install storm windows.
- Wrap it Up. Wrap water pipes that run along exterior walls with heating tape. It will save energy and prevent them from freezing.
- Freshen Up before Hibernation. Dust blinds and vacuum curtains throughout your house.
- Freshen your filter. Clean or replace dirty furnace filters.
- Give your furnace a physical. Have a professional inspect your heating system.
- Gather round the hearth. Check fireplaces for soot or creosote build-up. Grab a flashlight and look up chimney for blockages and check that damper is working. Better yet, schedule a visit from a reputable chimney sweep.
- Keep the humidifier humming. Clean the plates or pads to ensure efficient operation.
- Keep the wood fires burning brightly. Wood stoves are making a comeback. To avoid a deadly situation, be sure to inspect yours before firing it up.
- Keep your family safe at home. A home safety check should be an annual ritual in every household. Test smoke and CO monitors, inspect (or install) fire extinguishers, review fire escape plans, and rid your home of old newspapers and other fire hazards.
Remember to change your clocks back one hour on Sunday, November 2nd!