The heat of summer is fading, and that means that it’s time for you to start thinking about getting your home ready for cooler fall weather. Fall is all about the leaves turning and digging out your warm clothes. But it’s also about transitioning to much cooler weather, so it pays to be prepared.
Fall Seasonal Changes To Make To Your Home
1. Check for Drafts
You may not feel them much now, but come late fall and winter you’re going to be painfully aware of each and every draft in your house. So it’s best to start checking now so you have time to get any drafts fixed before the weather turns too cold. The obvious locations for drafts are around doors and windows, of course, so start there. Seals and caulking are usually the culprit here. Don’t forget that you can have drafts around power outlets, too, though, so check there as well.
2. Get the Furnace Inspected and Winterize the AC
Since it’s likely been several months since the last time your furnace ran, you need to check it over. An HVAC professional can make sure that it’s running at peak efficiency, and you also need to do a carbon monoxide test as well. Make sure you have a fresh air filter installed. If your air conditioner is a separate unit, you may need to cover it before winter hits. For window units, make sure that you either take them out of the windows or cover them completely so that they don’t allow cold air in.
3. Replace Batteries in Safety Devices
Fall is a good time to test or change the batteries in all of your various safety devices. This of course includes your smoke detectors and your carbon monoxide detectors, but you should also check the batteries in your programmable thermostat. When you test your smoke detectors and other safety devices, you’re looking for them to respond quickly and within the parameters of your user manuals. If they don’t, you need to replace them.
4. Look at the Roof, Gutters, and Siding
Hopefully you can check the majority of your roof from the ground. If you need to, use tools such as binoculars to get a good look. Damaged or missing shingles are a definite concern, because that can lead to leaks when you least want to deal with them. If your roof is flat, you need to make sure that it’s cleared off. Your gutters need to have all of the debris removed from inside. While you do that, look for any leaks or other issues, especially in the downspouts. Give your siding a good inspection, while you’re outside. And if it’s been a while, make sure that you power wash it, too.
5. Check Out Fireplace Issues
If your home has a fireplace, contact a chimney sweep to have your chimney both cleaned and inspected. Chimneys are famous for collecting debris, bird nests, and all sorts of other concerns. Once the fireplace is clean and declared functional, fire it up just to make sure. You don’t want to wait until you really need it to find out that the fireplace isn’t working properly. Stock up on firewood, and then you’ll be ready to go.
6. Store Lawn Equipment and Ready Winter Equipment
You won’t need your lawnmower, your trimmer, and assorted other lawn equipment during fall and winter. Empty the gas out of gas-powered items and make sure that cords are not frayed on electric items. Wrap the cords tightly and secure them, and then get your lawn equipment stored safely in the garage or shed. You’re probably going to be swapping these tools out for winter equipment, such as snow blowers and similar items. Get those winter items filled with gas and test them out.
Fire Up the Generator
Lastly, get your generator ready. Hopefully you won’t need your generator much over the fall and winter, but you need to make sure that it’s in working order now. Fill it with gas and make sure that you have a can of gas in reserve for emergencies. Fire up the generator and test that it powers everything that you need it to run if the power should cut off.
By this point, you should be ready to go for fall and winter. Now you can rest up, enjoy the leaves, and sip on hot cocoa.