Summer is on the wane, and fall is around the corner. That means welcome changes are afoot: a painter’s pallet of beautiful reds, oranges and greens on trees; cooler weather for hikes and outdoor events. And parents, admit it: it’s great to have the kids back in school.
But put the hold on the celebration for just a minute. It’s time to do some home maintenance before leaning into the season.
Here’s a simple to-do list from Family Handyman:
Clean your gutters: Gutters stuffed with debris will cause rainwater and melting snow to spill out, damaging your home’s exterior and foundation. Family Handyman recommends using a plastic spatula to scoop out debris. “It doesn’t scratch up the gutter… Grime wipes right off the spatula too, making cleanup a breeze.”
Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors: Fall is the perfect time to check batteries and expiration dates on these important safety devices. Make it an annual duty, so that this task doesn’t get overlooked.
Bleed hot water radiators: Trapped air can clog a hot water radiator and prevent it from working efficiently, notes Family Handyman. “Turn the small valve at the top of the radiator until water starts dripping out.” This lets the air out and helps restore proper function.
Schedule your sprinkler blow-out: Professionals book up for this task, which is best tackled in late September or early October. Set a date and prevent pipes from cracking in winter. Similarly, drain all garden hoses.
Clean chimneys: As you burn logs, creosote and soot build up on your chimney and can spark a dangerous chimney fire. If you haven’t cleaned your chimney in a few years, hire a professional to inspect your chimney and give it a thorough cleaning.
Get an HVAC tune-up: Schedule your annual furnace inspection now, before the first major storm hits. Also, have your air conditioning system winterized.