After a long, hot summer, fall is usually a welcome time of year. The kids are back in school, extracurricular activities are in full swing and the days get a little bit shorter. On the flip side, the barbecues and all those wonderful backyard engagements have come to an end, and it is time to get your home ready for the changing seasons as winter is right around the corner. Fall maintenance will help reduce the dreaded winter preparation, so don’t procrastinate. We’ve compiled an ultimate fall home maintenance to-do list for all homeowners.
- Depending on where you live the changing seasons means closing up the windows and an end of the fresh air flowing into the house. It’s time to make sure all of the foul smelling areas of your home are taken care of. Start with your garbage disposal. Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda into the disposal followed by one cup of vinegar. Let it bubble up for 15 minutes before pouring boiling water down the drain. Turn on the disposal to make sure you get everything flushed out. Finally use a little lemon juice to leave your kitchen sink smelling fresh and clean.
- After a summer full of dust and other dirty air particles coming in your home through open windows and doors it’s important that you change the air filters.
- Make arrangements to have your chimney and furnace inspected and thoroughly cleaned out. Be sure the professional you hire is certified and insured. I am a fan of using AngiesList.com to find reputable contractors in my city.
- The changing seasons means you need to change the direction that your ceiling fans are circulating the air in your home. During the fall and winter your ceiling fans should rotate in a clockwise direction. This helps to push the warm air down into the rest of your home.
- Thoroughly clean your oven and stove and make sure you do not overlook the overhead exhaust fans where there can be a large amount of built up grease. Be sure that you have an ABC rated fire extinguisher close to the stove and also one near the fireplace. I prefer several in my home to ensure the safety of the home and my family.
- With fall often comes a busier schedule. Give your refrigerator and freezer a good deep clean. Make sure to clear extra space in the freezer because you will be able to start making prepared meals for those busy evenings when you don’t want to cook.
- Check your toilets for leaks inside and around the supply line and bowl connection.
- Check your bathtub to ensure the caulk around the tub is not missing or cracked which will cause leaks.
- Fix squeaky door hinges with a couple sprays of WD-40.
- If you have a wood burning fireplace, it’s time to stock up on firewood for those cozy winter fires. All logs you purchase should be 100 percent hardwood.
- Winterize your lawn equipment. Run all the gas out of the tanks and drain the oil out of the engine. Take the garden hose and wash the underside of your lawn mower deck. Once that is done it’s time to store your lawn equipment away.
- Inspect and clean all debris from the gutters.
- Clean the tracks of your garage door opener, lubricate the springs, bearings, hinges and metal rollers.
- Test all carbon monoxide and smoke detectors and replace their batteries if necessary.
- Vacuum any lint that has gathered behind and under your cloths dryer. Clean out the piping that leads to the outside of your home.
- Get your carpets, and upholstery cleaned if necessary.
By following these steps for fall home maintenance you will have a head start at getting your home ready for the changing seasons.