Fall is the season to button-up your home before winter sets in. The Old Farmer’s Almanac predicts a cold, wet and snowy winter in Central PA, so it is important that you take time now to inspect your home and fix anything that could potentially be a problem later on.
Schedule furnace maintenance. We mentioned this last month, but it is worth repeating again. To keep your furnace in the best working order, have your HVAC contractor do a “preventative maintenance” checkup on your furnace. They will clean your furnace and inspect it for any parts that need to be repaired or replaced to keep your furnace in good working order all winter long.
Disconnect hoses. If you still have any garden hoses attached to the house, now is the time to detach and store them. Make sure the pipe that leads to the outside spigot is completely drained and turned off (from the inside). If water is left inside the pipe, it can expand and burst during the freezing months.
Store containers and paints indoors. Remove the soil from your clay or ceramic pots and planters. Dirt left in these containers could freeze and cause the pots to crack or break if left outside. Additionally, remove all liquid materials, like paint and caulk, from the unheated garage and outdoor shed.
Check weather stripping around doors. Check the weather stripping around all exterior doors and replace, if needed. Pay particular attention to the seals around your garage door to keep this area insulated tightly, as well as to keep out small animals seeking shelter.
Organize your garage. Store summer garden tools and toys, and bring out the snow shovels and ice melt. Make sure a snow/ice scrapper is in each vehicle, too, as we often seen freezing rain in the latter part of the month.
Clear fall leaves. Continue to clear fall leaves from gutters and around your furnace intake pipes to prevent any blockage.
Lawn reseeding. Cool nights and warm days make it an ideal time to aerate your yard and reseed and/or patch up areas. There is still enough sun during the day for the seeds to germinate before going into hibernation, and come spring, you’ll have a fuller, healthier yard to enjoy.
Inspect your deck, stairs and walkways. Take the time to inspect your deck and outdoor walkways for signs of worn boards or cracks, and fix and replace as needed. This could prevent someone from slipping and falling during the icy winter months.
Make sure your roof is in good shape. Your roof is your home’s first line of defense, so if you notice anything unusual, contact a professional roofer to get it inspected. A little money invested now will save you a bundle later.