As the summer season ends we can look forward to crisp days of fall weather, pumpkins and Thanksgiving. It's also the ideal time to go through an extensive list of home maintenance tasks that you can handle on your own.
Get your house ready for another winter, have a thorough look at the wear and tear of essential home systems and keep the repair bills down by completing this checklist each fall season.
- For central air systems, check the drain pan underneath the cooling coil inside the furnace plenum is draining clean water and well.
- Disconnect the furnace power and have a look at the forced air furnace fan belt. Check for level of wear, a tight fit and any evident noise. Also clean any build up from the fan blades.
- Turn on the pilot light (if applicable), change your thermostat to the heat setting and test that the furnace comes on by turning the settings up high. Don't forget to lower them back after confirming the unit is operating.
- Bleed the air from any hot water radiators.
- Vacuum electric baseboard heaters well to remove spider webs, dust and dirt.
- Take grates off of forced air ducts and vacuum well inside.
- Inspect all of your ductwork, paying special attention to the seals and repairing any tears, holes and damage to duct insulation.
- Cover the central air conditioner unit outside.
- Book an appointment to have your furnace serviced according to the manufacturer's schedule of maintenance.
Windows and Doors
- Remove summer screens and install storm windows if necessary. Take off insect screens regardless, as you'll be allowing more solar rays into your home which naturally cuts back on heating costs.
- Check all skylights and windows for a tight fit and replace weather stripping as necessary.
- Check doors for a tight seal and replace the door weather stripping as well.
Exterior of the Home
- Drain all hoses and store for the winter. Turn off the exterior hose valve and drain the hose bib if necessary (some houses have frost-free hose bibs.) Drain rain barrels and store if space permits.
- Clean leaves and debris from the eaves trough and make sure the drainage path from the roof is free from blocks.
- Inspect the chimney and remove any nests, debris or other blockages.
- Cover tender plants and trees and trim back the garden. Leave some plants with seed heads to provide natural birdseed during the winter.
- Test well water.
- Open your septic tank and inspect to see if a pumping is necessary before the long winter months.
- Fix drainage issues near the foundation by adding soil around it and creating a slope away from your house.
Interior of the Home
- Test, inspect and clean all smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Check sump pit for debris and test sump pump operation, including the float.
- Clean out gas fireplaces with vacuum and specialty fireplace glass cleaning products.
With these tasks complete you can relax and enjoy the cooler temperatures. When winter hits, your home will be ready.Posted by: TrustedPros