With winter right around the corner, it’s important to get your home in shape before the temperature drops and the rain and snow takes a toll on your home. We’ve gathered the top “must-do” items that homeowners should take into consideration in order to protect their home and their family.
- Check your Chimney
You may not realize it, but a wood burning fireplace can build up with creosote, a harmful combustible chemical that can form in your chimney.
Creosote is a black thick-like tar that develops in your chimney stack. If you don’t have your chimney cleaned every winter, the oil can catch on fire quickly, damaging your home and put your family’s health at risk. For these reasons, it is imperative that you get your chimney checked every fall. A chimney sweeper can make recommendations as to if you need your fireplace and chimney stack cleaned.
While you are thinking about your chimney, you may also want to consider adding a cap to prevent animal nests or homes from being constructed at the top of your chimney.
- Clean Out Gutters
Before the onset of the increased rain, snow, and ice, you’ll want to clean out your gutters. Clogged gutters can cause serious home damage like foundation, structural, and flooding damage, and these home repairs can be costly.
If you are cleaning your gutters on your own, be sure to use proper ladder safety techniques. Always keep both feet and at least one hand when using a ladder. Consider laying a tarp on the ground to throw any debris from your gutters onto and protect your landscaping. After cleaning your gutters, you may want to consider installing a gutter guard, like Leaf Filter, to eliminate any future gutter hassles.
- Inspect Your Roof
If you are not privy to using a ladder, consider using binoculars from ground level to inspect your roof. Looking for loose or missing shingles that will need to be repaired. If you suspect any damage, you may want to get a professional to recommend courses of action. A repair might be a little costly, however, it will prevent any serious and substantial damage from occurring in the future.
- Store your Patio Furniture
Whether you are storing or covering your patio furniture, take the time to do a bit of cleaning and maintenance. This will increase the longevity of your furniture.
Remove all cushions and scrub all of the pieces with dish soap and a soft bristled brush. You’ll also want to make sure the cushions get a thorough cleaning too. While cleaning, take the time to inspect for any loose or missing screws. By tightening and replacing any loose screws, you will increase the lifetime of your patio furniture. If you don’t have any room for your furniture in your basement or garage, be sure to get some heavy-duty covers to protect everything from winter’s wrath.
- Stow Your Mower
When your mower is sitting all winter, fuel will begin to decompose and varnish the carburetor. When you go to start your engine in the spring, you’ll run into issues. To prevent any sort of issues, wait until the tank is nearly empty from use and run the engine outdoors to use up any remaining fuel. We also suggest checking your mower’s manual for any cold-weather storage steps that would be specific to your product.
Incorporate these five steps before the winter weather hits your area and your home should be in good shape!