The 20 Fall Home Maintenance Tasks To Get Your Home Ready For Windy, Wet, and Colder Weather
The warm months are coming to an end, and we are beginning to enjoy a change of season when leaves start to fall and temperatures become cooler. Yes, fall is upon us which signals a great time to be feeling comfier and more relaxed in our homes.
As you prepare yourself for the comfort that this new season brings, has your home been prepped for the temperature and weather changes too?
Checking your home and attending to any needed repairs or maintenance is probably not your idea of a fun way to spend the last few weeks of summer (it’s not mine either).
But preparing your home and making it ready for fall is a smart move to ensure that you are not surprised by problems that could have been avoided. Making your home fall-ready today can save you from spending a fortune on repairs tomorrow.
Don’t know where to start? Here are 25 things you should include in your home maintenance checklist to get your home ready for fall.
1. Store summer stuff
Kick off your home maintenance tasks for fall by putting away items that you use during the summer. Prepare a good storage space particularly for big items like pool toys, lounge chairs, tiki torches, and umbrellas.
While you’re at it, you may want to check your storage bins and ensure they can be easily accessed when you need any items for upcoming holidays.
2. Check your roof
The last thing you need is to repair a roof at the most inconvenient time. Trying to get a roofer out to your home when its raining, is very difficult and can be more costly due to demand and risk!
Before fall hits, make sure to give your roof a good check-up for anything that needs fixing, such as roof discoloration and broken shingles.
3. Make sure your gutters are fall-ready
Gutter spouts should be checked for leaves, branches and other debris, to ensure they won’t cause any clogging. You can use a plastic spatula to remove clumped wet leaves and other debris that have made their way into the gutter.
A plastic spatula is a flexible tool that you can cut as well to your desired shape when you need to give those gutter contours a good cleanup.
While you’re at it, make sure your gutters are in tip-top shape to welcome the change of seasons. Check if they need any repairs to ensure that your gutters are still perfectly capable of routing water away from your home.
4. Prepare the garage floor
A damaged garage floor may cause slips and falls, so make sure the surface is in good repair. Also, items stored in cardboard boxes on the ground in the garage are susceptible to damage in the event rain waters make their way into the garage, so make time to find other places to store those for the coming fall season.
Also, give your garage door a good inspection to check for any damage – if you don’t want to get stuck inside or outside your garage. Checking for potential areas that may leak in a heavy rain storms now, can help prevent unwanted water damage to drywall and valuables stored in the garage.
5. Fix window screens
Torn window screens are the perfect entryway for mosquitos and other pests to invade your home. Check your screens to make sure they are damage free and durable enough to keep your home pest-free so you can enjoy the cool breezes of fall with your windows open.
6. Check for holes
There may be unsealed gaps or holes in your home that can serve as doors for insects and other pests. Common places to find these are pipelines and electrical lines, broken dryer vents, in the attic, crawl space, etc. Make sure to stuff these holes using copper mesh and foam sealant. The foam sealant expands, and will help seal the holes.
7. Inspect wood-covered areas for moisture
Moisture is the life line that gives insects and pests their sustenance. So, when there are areas in your home – especially those covered in wood – that attract moisture easily, this can serve as a good place for pests to feed and breed.
Window frames and other areas where moisture-rich soil may find its way in should be cleaned right away and must be kept dry to avoid attracting pests.
8. Repair broken driveway
Moisture and unpredictable temperatures may cause concrete-made driveways and sidewalks to crack, which may result in accidents. Check if they need repair to ensure safety prior to inclement weather begins as it is much more difficult to make repairs when it’s wet, cold, and windy outside.
9. Check your fences
Be on the lookout for any concerns like rot or molds that may cause your fence posts to break or shift over. Make sure to give these posts attention to strengthen your fence structure as fences blowing over during storms can be the source of unwanted injury and property damage.
10. Keep detectors working
Smoke and carbon dioxide detectors must be inspected to make sure they are working perfectly well before fall makes its way into your location. They must be equipped with fresh batteries once expired.
11. Make use of De-humidifiers
De-humidifiers help rid your home of moisture that can lead to the growth of mold, so it is definitely a good idea to have one at home if you live in an area or home prone to high humidity. These machines require cleaning and maintenance, so give it a quick once-over by cleaning its compartment and providing new filters.
You don’t have to spend a lot on cleaning the inside compartment of your dehumidifier as you can make use of cleaning solutions you can find at home, like vinegar.
12. Inspect the generator
If you keep a generator at home, it is wise to give it a good inspection as well. Make sure it is in good working condition and that you have the proper fuel on hand to be prepared for any power outages. This is even more important this year, with the planned power outages by PG&E in the event of fire warnings.
13. Deal with leaky fireplace and stove ducts
Make sure air ducts aren’t leaking by testing if the combustion gases are going up the flue. The backdrafting test you conduct will ensure if the air ducts need sealing. If they do, you can use a metal tape or silicone-made sealants that are designed for high temperatures.
14. Make sure water drainage systems are working
Apart from downspouts, you must also make sure that any other water drainage systems around your home are working properly to keep water away from your home, driveways, and walkways. These areas must be cleaned and rid of any obstructions that may cause water to directly flow into your home.
15. Check plants and trees that are near your house
Shrubs and bushes are home to insects that may find their way into your home when they are close enough. Trim these plants that have their stems brushing against your roof so that insects and rodents won’t make a bridge out of them.
Moreover, check for trees with limbs that are too close to your roof or power lines. These may cause accidental fire or damage to your roof, windows, etc.
16. Remove water from ponds and waterfalls
If you have a man-made water feature on your property, its a good idea to drain and clean it to prevent falling leaves and other debris from clogging the filters or pump. A water-free pond, fountain, or waterfall will also prevent algae growth, saving you some cleaning come Spring time.
17. Store your A/C
This is the time for your air-conditioning unit to rest, so you may want to properly store it, with the breaker completely powered down.
This is also a good time to have your unit serviced by an HVAC specialist, so that you can rest assured it will be working properly once you need it for the warmer months. Also, it can be more affordable during this time of year when HVAC companies are not as busy.
18. Inspect the chimney
If you have a chimney, make sure it is cleaned and inspected by a professional to avoid fire from breaking out. While you’re at it, consider having a chimney cap installed to prevent pests from making their way in, as well as to protect it from damage.
19. Put firewood in proper storage area
Firewood should be kept away from your house and stored in a proper location. This is to prevent insects and pests from multiplying and damaging your home. It can also keep potential fuel away from your home in the event of a fire.
20. Prepare for guests
Be sure your yard is hole free and that the walkway to your front door is well lit and free of any tripping hazards like loose electrical cords and decorations. Falls on your property can be a scary and potentially expensive situation, so make sure you are prepared for guests!
Fall Home Maintenance Tasks - An Ounce Of Prevention
With these simple tips, you can get your home ready for fall and make sure its foundations are strengthened not only to protect you and your family but also to give you a comfortable place during the change of seasons, and the upcoming holidays and winter months.
To ensure that your home is properly protected and damage-free, have a professional inspect it for any water leaks, molds, or fire damage. Enlist the help of trusted professionals like Five Star Restoration, a professional water and fire damage restoration and mold remediation company in Southern California that you can call 24/7 for free inspections and affordable restoration.
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