It’s that time of year when Daylight Savings Time ends, (Learn Why) and at 2:00am Sunday November 6th 2016, we wind our clocks backward one hour. Aside from the added benefit of getting an extra hour of sleep on Sunday morning, it’s also a great reminder to prepare your home for the winter head.
In this Costimates home guide, I want to share a list of regular household tasks and maintenance items that should be taken care of before the winter ahead. Over the years I’ve kind of made this into a habit and now it’s part of my fall home maintenance checklist every year.
1 – Replace Batteries in Smoke Detectors and/or CO Alarms – This simple task is so common and has been so often referenced by local Fire Dept’s, that everyone should be doing this at 2:00 am, in their sleep!
2 – Replace Filter in the Refrigerator Water and Ice Dispenser – Often forgotten inside the refrigerator, the small filters should be changed twice a year, making these clock events a perfect time to get it done.
3 – Schedule Annual Service for Furnace or Heating System – Done at least once per year, your home heating system has to keep you warm through the winter. If you do it now, you’ll not only save a bit of money over an emergency repair call, but the hvac system should operate at higher efficiency also.
4 – Inspect Your Roof Shingles and Eaves – A 5 minute walk on your roof will tell you the basics of condition it’s in. If you spot damaged, raised or broken shingles or dried up roof jacks around pipes, or anything else that looks like it warrants a better inspection, call in a roofing company to handle an inspection. Click here to get an idea of what the replacement or repair cost may be before talking to them.
Note: Don’t forget to look inside your attic at the underside of the roof also. Dark spots, white spots, or really any irregular discoloration of the plywood, is indicative of a problem.
5 – Clean Your Gutters – You may need to do this 2-4 times per year depending on the trees in your area, but now is the perfect time to do so… before fall rains, snow and ice plug them and possibly cause damage to your roof. Cleaning gutters is an inexpensive bit of security to assure good operation and no additional damage by clogging and soaking the roof.
6 – Overseed Your Lawn – Fall is the best time of year to aerate and overseed your lawn in preparation for next spring. In the winter months grass will grow down into the soil, establishing a strong root system for next growing season. Combined with fall cleanup, overseeding is great way to assure beautiful lawn in the spring.
7 – Have Your Chimney Inspected and/or Cleaned – Who wants a fire in their chimney without making sure it’s cleaned? Nobody… This is an annual task that costs around $160 and is great safety insurance for you and your family.
8 – Check Window and Door Seals and Weatherstripping– Open and close all doors and windows, checking the seals for cracks and light. Closing up those drafts now can save you chilly nights and energy costs as winter comes upon us.
9 – Trim Up Tree Branches – Look at the trees around your home and remove (or have removed) any branches or limbs that are dead, broken, or hanging off trees. These are going to fall when snow falls and it’s much easier to remove them now, versus after they land on the roof of your car.
10 – Clean Runoff Drains Around Your home – Whether you have a storm drain in the street or a french drain in your backyard, it’s important to clean them of all leaves and other fall debris regularly.
What Would You Add to the List?
Use the comment box below to tell us what you would add to this list of things to do around your home when you turn the clock back.