As the leaves change colors and the air becomes crisp, clear signs that fall is here. Ensure your property is in top shape and prevent costly repairs in the future with these fall home maintenance tips.
1. Inspect and Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Leaves and debris can quickly clog your gutters and downspouts. Regularly clean them to prevent water overflow from drain blockage, which can damage your roof, siding, and foundation.
2. Check and Seal Windows and Doors
Inspect the seals around your windows and doors for cracks or gaps. Seal them to prevent pests from entering, for proper insulation to improve energy efficiency, and to ensure the temperature in your home is where you want it to be.
3. Emergency Kit
Assemble or update an emergency kit with essentials like a flashlight, batteries, non-perishable food, and first aid supplies.
4. HVAC Maintenance
Before the cold weather arrives, schedule a professional HVAC system inspection. Change air filters and clean vents. Regular HVAC maintenance is essential to keep your heating and cooling system running efficiently.
5. Seal The Cracks
Cracks in driveways, walkways, and foundation walls can act as pathways for water to seep in. Repair the cracks to prevent water from seeping in and causing further damage.
How to seal the cracks in your driveway:
- Prepare: Clean the driveway thoroughly.
- Choose Materials: Get the appropriate filler and sealant for your driveway.
- Fill Cracks: Fill deep cracks with filler, level it, and let it dry.
- Apply Sealant: Use an applicator to spread the sealant over cracks, overlapping the edges.
- Smooth Sealant: Feather the sealant to blend with the driveway surface.
- Allow to Dry: Follow the drying time instructions of the product.
- Clean Tools: Clean tools immediately after use.
6. Prepare Your Lawn and Garden
As the growing season winds down, give your lawn one last mow, trim bushes and trees, and store outdoor furniture and garden tools in a safe, dry place.
How to store outdoor furniture:
- Clean the furniture: Remove dirt, dust, and any stains. Use appropriate cleaning solutions and tools for the specific material (wood, metal, plastic, etc.) to avoid damage.
- Dry completely: Avoid moisture in your furniture, which can lead to mold, mildew, and rust, which can damage it.
- Disassemble if possible: To save space and for easy storage, disassemble your outdoor furniture.
- Use furniture covers: Invest in high-quality furniture covers. Protect your furniture from dust, rain, and UV rays.
- Elevate off the ground: Store your furniture off the ground to prevent moisture damage. You can use furniture blocks or store them on a raised platform like a wooden pallet.
7. Appliance Maintenance
Service and clean your major appliances, such as the refrigerator and oven, to ensure they run efficiently before the holiday season.
8. Test The Detectors
Replace the batteries on your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors; you should test them to know if they’re working accurately.
9. Clean the Dryer Vent
Lint buildup in dryer vents is a fire hazard. Remove and clean the lint trap and the vent duct regularly to reduce the risk of a dryer fire.
Moreover, you can find safety reminders from the National Fire Protection Association here.
10. Finish Exterior Painting Projects
The fall season typically offers a comfortable temperature outside, making it an ideal time for painting. This weather allows the paint to adhere better and dry properly, resulting in a more durable and weather-resistant finish.
Follow these fall home maintenance tips for a safe and comfortable environment throughout the colder months. Learn more about home hazards.
Finally, remember that preventive maintenance is a wise investment, as it can save you money and the hassle of emergency repairs. We hope you have a well-prepared home this fall season for whatever the colder seasons bring. Happy fall!