There’s a chill in the air and, along with it, that nagging feeling that home maintenance chores await. While it’s tempting to procrastinate, now is the time to attend to your home, winterizing before the cold sets in.
Your to-do list should include these duties:
Clean gutters: Now is the time to remove leaves and other debris that have fallen into your gutters. This will help ensure good drainage after snowstorms, when melting occurs.
Clean the chimney: If you haven’t done recently, hire a professional to rout out soot, creosote and other dangerous elements that accumulate on the inside of the chimney. It’s also advisable to place a screen on top of the chimney to keep out rodents and other creatures.
Have your furnace inspected: It’s important to have an HVAC professional check the furnace for any malfunctions. Also, be sure to change the filters and keep new ones handy for monthly replacement during the winter months.
Be sure you know where your water main is located. This will speed your reaction time in the case of freezing pipes and other emergencies. Also, drain garden hoses and put them in storage for the winter.
Check the foundation around the house: Clear away any debris and vegetation from the house’s foundation so that you can spot any cracks or entry holes. If you find some, be sure to seal them off to keep animals from entering your home as the cold sets in.
Caulk gaps in siding, windows or doors: This will keep the cold wind from blowing through your living room—and help you save on energy bills.