5 Fall Maintenance Tips
For most residents of Vancouver Island, the Fall season is a favourite. Crisp clear skies, gorgeous colourful trees, cozy sweaters, and fun activities. However, for many homeowners, it is a new season that adds far too many items to their To-Do list. It can feel like never ending jobs to do around the house before the wet and cold winter hits.
To help avoid winter house disasters, here are our Top 5 preparation tips to complete this Fall:
1. Clear your drains – Our wet and wild winters means your home needs somewhere for all that water to go. If you have a basement or ground floor living space, make sure it is protected and see if there are any improvements you can make now to avoid drainage problems. Do an exterior check for any tree roots that could have grown this Spring/Summer and damaged the foundation of your home. Walk through your basement or ground floor and check for moisture. For a couple dollars at a dollar store, you can get moisture collectors that will absorb moisture in a room. If it fills with water, you have moisture in your home and should get it fixed! Water doesn’t only bring risk to the lower floors though. Be sure to get your gutters cleaned. It is so easy to forget they are likely filled with debris near the end of Fall, so making sure they are clear and ready for the snow melt will save you in the long run!
2. Check for drafts – A cool breeze is all we dream of over the summer, but as temperatures drop, keeping the cold air out and the warm air in your home is important to reduce your monthly heating costs. Check your doors and windows for any spaces in the seals. There are several affordable options at any hardware store that can save you from having to replace the whole seal.
3. Safety Walk-through – Make sure all the heating equipment that has been turned off for months hasn’t become a makeshift storage rack or dust collector! Paint buckets, aerosol spray cans, extension cords and propane tanks are used all the time during the warmer months. Be sure to store them properly and keep them away from your furnace or heating equipment. Check your wires and cords for frays. Do your annual fireplace, chimney, and heater maintenance. Change all filters for your furnace, kitchen range and clothes dryer or give them a good cleaning. We know you want to stay warm this winter, but a house fire is not the way to go!
4. Storage & Maintenance – It is easy to quickly toss your garden tools into the shed for the winter but give them a good clean before storing them away. Your future self will thank you! Outdoor equipment (E.g. Lawnmowers!) and furniture can be expensive to repair/replace if it is not serviced or maintained for a number of months. So be sure to service your equipment, store or cover your furniture, and make sure your summer living spaces are cared for now, so you can save time and money next Spring.
5. Fall Clean – We’ve all heard of Spring Cleaning, but it is just as important to do it in the Fall, too! Tidy the garden, wash down the patio, dust your light fixtures, vacuum all the nooks and crannies, and clean your carpets and upholstery while you can still open your windows and doors to avoid moisture build up. If you are thinking of moving this winter, doing your improvements and deep cleans now while the days are brighter can save you a lot of stress. Even if you aren’t moving, your home will feel so much cozier and happier all winter long if it is fresh and clean!
Most people know the importance of doing these items, but for many home owners, especially if this is your first Fall and Winter in your home, these tips can help prepare you and hopefully motivate you to be winter ready this year.