September 2015: Fall Maintenance
Ask The Inspector
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Q. What tasks should I do around my house this fall?
A. Autumn is upon us, and there are many things you should be doing around the house to prepare for the cooler weather of winter. Here’s a handy checklist:
- After leaves have fallen, clean the gutters to keep water flowing away from the house.
- Remove garden hoses from outdoor faucets/bibs, drain and store hoses, and shut off the water.
- Check caulking anywhere two different materials meet. Specifically, check wood siding joining the foundation wall and where window or door trim meets the siding.
- Check for broken or cracked glass and damaged screens or storm windows.
- Insulate pipes in crawl spaces and attics.
- Have the chimney flue inspected and cleaned by a certified chimney sweep. Also, inspect the damper.
- Remove bird nests from chimney flues and outdoor electrical fixtures.
- Run all gas-powered lawn equipment until the fuel is gone.
- Clean, repair and store outdoor furniture.
- Trim tree branches that hang over the roof or gutters.
- Mulch around bulbs, shrubs and trees to prevent drastic soil temperature change from destroying plant root systems.
- Check the reversing/safety mechanism on garage door operators.
- Inspect the roof for missing or damaged shingles and repair.
- If you have a pool, check the pool cover for damage and repair or replace if necessary.
- Make sure the seal between your garage door and the ground is tight. Add a layer of weather stripping if necessary.
- Have your heating system inspected and cleaned by a certified professional, and remember to change your furnace filters regularly.
- Change the direction of ceiling fans to create an upward draft that redistributes warm air from the ceiling.
- Test and change the batteries in all smoke detectors.
- Empty all soil from outdoor pots and planters.
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