Preparing Your Home For Fall.
Now that fall has officially begun, it is time to make sure that your home is ready for the new season. Here are a few things to check to make sure your home is in the best condition for the cooler months.
Clean your gutters and downspouts.
Clogged gutters can cause roof leakage and damage to the interior/exterior of your home. Clogged gutters will channel water down the side of your home where it eventually damages the foundation and can flood your basement. Get a ladder and pull debris out of the gutters by hand.
Remove hoses from spigots and put away.
Hoses can crack during the colder months making them useless and if there is water in the hose and it freezes, bye bye pipes. Make sure to remove your hose and make sure no water is in it before storing.
Inspect roof and chimney for damage.
With the recent rains and heavy winds from hurricane season, it would be best to have your roof and chimney inspected. Nothing is charming about filling your home with soot, smoke, and carbon monoxide because your chimney isn’t working correctly. Even gas fireplaces need an inspection to ensure the pipe is free of cracks that can allow smoke to enter your home. Make sure your furnace is clean and ready to be used for winter. A professional will check to make sure no gases are leaking that can cause problems later.
Check windows and doors for weather-tightness.
Cold air coming into your home will cause your electric bills to go up. Make sure all your windows and doors are properly in place so as to not any air in or heat out.
Check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
Colder months means a reason to use the fireplace. It’s also the time of year when you’re constantly cooking. To avoid any unforeseen issues, make sure your detectors are working!
Clean cabinets around the home.
Clean all the dust from the cabinets around the house. Heat and dust are not a good combination. One word: allergies.
Drain And Store Your Lawn Equipment
Over time, unused fuel goes through chemical changes that create deposits and destroy your lawn equipment. So drain the tanks of your lawn mower, leaf blower, and weed eater before storing them. Fall is also an excellent time to get your lawn mower blades sharpened so they’ll be ready for next Spring.
Keep the Humidifier Humming
You may know that bone dry winter air is bad for your health, but did you also know it can make fine wood more prone to cracking? You and your home will feel more comfortable if you keep your central humidifier in tip-top shape during the months it is running.
First, inspect the plates or pads, and if necessary, clean them in a strong laundry detergent solution. Rinse and scrape off mineral deposits with a wire brush or steel wool.
Walk the Walks
Damaged walkways, drives, and steps are a hazard year-round, but their dangers are compounded when the weather turns icy. Fixing problems in the fall is also critical to preventing little problems from becoming expensive headaches.
Look for cracks more than 1/8-inch wide, uneven sections, and loose railings on steps. Check for disintegration of asphalt or washed-out materials on loose-fill paths. Most small jobs are well within the ability of a do-it-yourselfer, but save major repairs for experienced hands.
Review Safety Features
At least once a year, do a top-to-bottom review of your home’s safety features. This is also a good time to get the family together for a review of your fire evacuation plan. Here’s how to do this:
Smoke and CO Detectors: Replace the batteries in each smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) detector, then vacuum them with a soft brush attachment. Test the detectors by pressing the test button or holding a smoke source (like a blown-out candle) near the unit. If you haven’t already, install a smoke detector on every floor of your home, including the basement.
Fire Extinguishers: Every home should have at least one fire extinguisher rated for all fire types (look for an A-B-C rating on the label). At a minimum, keep one near the kitchen; having one per floor isn’t a bad idea. Annually, check the indicator on the pressure gauge to make sure the extinguisher is charged. Make certain that the lock pin is intact and firmly in place, and check that the discharge nozzle is not clogged. Clean the extinguisher and check it for dents, scratches, and corrosion. Replace if the damage seems severe. Note: Fire extinguishers that are more than six years old should be replaced. Mark the date of purchase on the new unit with a permanent marker.
Fire Escape Plans: Every bedroom, including basement bedrooms, should have two exit paths. Make sure windows aren’t blocked by furniture or other items. Ideally, each upper-floor bedroom should have a rope ladder near the window for emergency exits. Review what to do in case of fire, and arrange a safe meeting place for everyone away from the house.
General Cleanup: Rid your home of accumulations of old newspapers and leftover hazardous household chemicals. (Check with your state or local Environmental Protection Agency about the proper way to discard dangerous chemicals.) Store flammable materials and poisons in approved, clearly labeled containers. Keep a clear space around heaters, furnaces, and other heat-producing appliances.
With these tips, we hope you too will be Fall ready. If you need help getting your home Fall ready, give us a call here at Home Remedy Houston.