Autumn Outdoor Home Maintenance Checklist
Fireplaces, blankets, warm drinks...there is no doubt fall is the beginning of the home-y season. But before you begin to transition to spending more time indoors, get your home ready with this outdoor home maintenance checklist.
Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Autumn leaves are beautiful...until they clog gutters and downspouts. Gutters filled with leaves and pine straw can cause moisture and mildew problems on soffits, resulting in rotting wood and roof leaks. You may want to do this several times during the fall season as leaves continue to fall.
Winterize Outdoor Pools and Water Features
If you have an outdoor pool or water features that are not heated, drain the water or use a cover. You’ll want to take the time to winterize exposed pipes and faucets to avoid any costly repairs. Be sure to drain any garden hoses so you won’t have to spend money on replacements during the springtime.
Wash Exterior and Indoor Windows
While winterizing windows, use this time to also wash the glass! Over time dirt and buildup can form on the glass, so rinsing them off every once in a while can help maintain a nice clear view. While wiping down the windows, use this time as well to check for any seal air leaks!
Clean and Store Outdoor Furniture
As the season changes, pick a dry, sunny day to give your outdoor furniture a good cleaning to prepare it for storage. It is particularly important to treat stains at this time because allowing them to remain on upholstery or outdoor umbrella fabric for several months can make this task extremely difficult later on.
Sweep and Inspect Chimneys and Fireplaces
A chimney should be cleaned and inspected yearly. A chimney sweep will help protect your home from accidental fires caused by creosote build-up. If you didn’t give your interior fireplace surround a good cleaning before, do it right away. Waiting for another season will just add to the build-up of soot and make cleaning more difficult later on.
Change Filters and Batteries
A change of seasons also signals a time to change any air filters or batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. This is an essential item on the checklist that can help protect everyone in your household.
Check Your Roof
Inspect the roof for any cracking or loose shingles after the heat of summer. Make repairs before winter snow, wind, and rain can cause any expensive leaks.
Check Your Landscape and Driveway
Although grass appears to stop growing in the fall, the roots are growing deeper to prepare for winter. Now is the best time to fertilize and reseed your lawn, and cut the grass short. Prune your trees and shrubs after the leaves turn to encourage healthy growth. Trimming any tree limbs that are close to power lines or your roof can also help reduce any ice damage in the winter.
Be sure to inspect your driveway for any cracks in the concrete. Any small cracks can turn into larger cracks by springtime. This is because water can enter the crack and freeze over when temperatures drop, causing the concrete to expand and create pressure. Use a broom or leaf blower to keep your driveway clear of any fall leaves. If left to sit on your driveway for an extended period of time, these leaves can cause uneven fading.