Your home is an investment that requires year-round maintenance. Protecting it from the elements is essential, especially during the winter. Follow this checklist to ensure your home is prepped and ready for the upcoming months.
- Test Smoke Alarms
Did you know most house fires happen during the winter months? Now is the time to check that all of the fire alarms in your home are working and have good batteries.
- Check the Heating and Air Conditioning System
Your home’s heating and air conditioning system has a lifetime of 10-15 years. Proper maintenance will save you in the long run on the cost of repairs and potentially having to prematurely replace the system. Before temperatures drop, be sure to have your system checked by a professional. It’s best to be proactive about this every year so you can be confident your heat will work when you need it.
- Clean the Chimney
Before you start building fires this winter, have your chimney professionally cleaned and inspected to make sure it’s safe to use. Now is the time to get fresh firewood for the season and check your old firewood and make sure it isn’t rotten.
- Clean the Gutters
Backed up gutters will create overflow that runs down the sides of your home, causing the exterior to deteriorate faster. Once the trees look like they have lost most of their leaves, it’s time to clean your gutters. Also, check that downspouts are directing water away from your home. Wet soil around the foundation can cause damage as it freezes and thaws throughout the winter months.
- Close Up the Pool
This can be worth paying a professional to do so they can inspect the system before shutting it down for the year. This way, if any repairs need to be made you can take care of it right away, or budget for them in the spring.
- Tend to the Lawn
Taking care of your lawn in the fall will give you a fresher look when the snow melts. Aerating your lawn in late September and then applying a fertilizer with winterizer in late October will lead you to a healthier lawn in the spring.
- Paint and seal exterior wood
Materials used on decks are usually rot-resistant or pressure treated, but the trim around the exterior of your home will deteriorate quickly if it isn’t painted and caulked. Touching up cracked caulk or chipped paint on trim is a simple task you can do yourself before the cold hits.
- Prepare for snow removal
Time to dig out the salt, shovels and snow blower. Start it up and make sure it’s ready for the first snowfall. Move and protect all outdoor furniture so nothing is in your way when it comes time to clear snow.
Now that your home is fully winterized, it’s time to build a fire and pour yourself a cup of hot cocoa.