Fall Home Maintenance Checklist

Essential Tasks to Keep Your Home in Top Shape

Fall Home Maintenance

Regular home maintenance is crucial for preserving the value of your property and ensuring a safe and comfortable living environment. By following a comprehensive checklist, you can tackle key maintenance tasks throughout the year, preventing major issues and costly repairs. In this blog, we will provide you with a detailed home maintenance checklist, covering tasks to be done during the fall season as well as monthly responsibilities.

🍁 Fall Home Maintenance Checklist:

Drain sprinkler systems and cover outdoor pipes:
Prevent freezing and potential damage to your water sources by draining sprinkler systems and covering outdoor pipes.
Mow your lawn and winterize your garden:
Give your lawn a final trim before winter sets in, and winterize your garden by protecting plants from frost damage. Bring sensitive plants indoors during cold spells.
Rake leaves and aerate your lawn:
Keep your lawn healthy by raking leaves and removing debris. Additionally, consider aerating your lawn to promote proper airflow and nutrient absorption.
Clean gutters:
Before snowfall (if applicable), clean out leaves and debris from gutters to ensure proper drainage and prevent potential water damage.
Clean major kitchen appliances:
Prepare for the upcoming holiday season by cleaning the interior of major kitchen appliances, ensuring they're ready for use.
Drain, clean, and cover your swimming pool:
If you live in a colder climate, properly drain, clean, and cover your swimming pool to protect it from freezing temperatures.
Empty gas-powered lawn equipment:
Prevent damage to your equipment by emptying the fuel from gas-powered lawn tools before storing them for the winter.
Schedule a chimney inspection and cleaning:
Hire a certified chimney sweep to inspect and clean flues and vents, ensuring safe and efficient operation during the colder months.
Re-caulk/seal doors and windows:
Seal gaps around doors and windows to keep cold air out and maintain a comfortable indoor environment.
Protect your air conditioning unit:
Cover your outdoor air conditioning unit with a waterproof cover to shield it from harsh weather conditions.
Clean clothes dryer exhaust duct:
Remove lint buildup from the clothes dryer exhaust duct, damper, and the space under the dryer to prevent potential fire hazards.

Warning Sign

Monthly Home Maintenance Checklist:

Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms:
Regularly test your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms to ensure they are in proper working condition. Replace batteries as needed and follow the manufacturer's instructions for maintenance.

Snake and clean drains:
Prevent costly plumbing problems by regularly snaking and cleaning all drains, including those in tubs, showers, and sinks. Clearing out debris and buildup helps maintain proper drainage and prevents clogs.

Check HVAC filters:
Inspect and change your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) filters as necessary. This is particularly important if you live in a warmer climate where the AC is used frequently. Clean filters improve air quality and maximize system efficiency.

Clean dishwasher screen:
To enhance your dishwasher's efficiency, clean the screen to remove trapped food particles that can obstruct water flow. This simple maintenance task ensures your dishes come out sparkling clean with each cycle.

Wash and disinfect trash cans:
Regularly wash and disinfect your trash cans to prevent odors and discourage pests. Use a cleaning solution and thoroughly rinse the bins to maintain a clean and sanitary environment.

Examine utility bills for spikes in usage:
Review your utility bills monthly to identify any significant spikes in usage. Such increases could indicate problems with your home's systems or highlight the need for adjusting your usage habits. Address any concerns promptly to avoid higher costs and energy waste.

Warning Sign

NEVER Skip these 4 Tasks During the Year:

1. Getting a furnace/heating tune-up:
A heating system needs to be serviced once a year, typically at the start of the heating season. A qualified professional will change the filters and check for dangerous carbon monoxide leaks to keep it running at top shape.

  • Furnace cleaning or repairs typically cost a few hundred dollars.
  • Potential savings: Replacing a furnace costs a few thousand dollars, and major repairs could run as high as $2,000. You might add $100 or so in higher heating bills during the winter if your furnace becomes inefficient, too. But a new, more efficient furnace will save you in heating costs in the long run.

2. Eliminating ice dams:
Ice dams can cause serious roof damage, as the water works its way under the roof shingles and into soffit vents. Inadequate attic insulation is usually the culprit, allowing heated air to warm a roof and melt snow. With the spring thaw, the chance of serious leaks inside the house goes way up.

  • Replacing attic batt and roll insulation typically costs a few thousand dollars.
  • Potential savings: Preventing ice dams can avoid replacing an entire roof, which costs an average of approximately $8,000. It could also prevent water damage to interior ceilings and walls.

3. Cleaning the gutters and downspouts:
Gutters and downspouts clogged with leaves and other debris can cause the rainwater to overflow — and that can lead to costly repairs. Regularly cleaning gutters can prevent water damage. Ideally, you should clean the gutters and downspouts in the fall and spring, and check them monthly.

  • You can clean your gutters using your own sweat equity, or pay a few hundred dollars to have it done professionally.
  • Potential savings: Repairing a ceiling that’s been damaged by water can cost hundreds of dollars. Runaway roof water can wear down foundation walls, and that repair can cost thousands.

4. Dehumidifying your home:
Keeping your home’s humidity to 30 percent to 50 percent consistently can keep the growth of moisture-loving dust mites and mold at bay, so a dehumidifier is a great investment for most homeowners.

  • Dehumidifiers cost a few thousand dollars to install if you’re considering a self-emptying model.
  • Potential savings: High humidity levels can lead to serious mold outbreaks that require professional remediation, which can cost many thousands of dollars.

By following this comprehensive home maintenance checklist, you can stay on top of essential tasks throughout the year. Regular inspections, cleanings, and repairs will help preserve your home's value, prevent major issues, and ensure a comfortable and safe living environment. Remember, proactive maintenance saves you time, money, and stress in the long run.

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