September 18, 2023

Earlier is better for fall maintenance and cleanup

It’s hard to believe, but summer has already come and gone. Kids are Back to School, and the leaves are starting to turn. Before you know it, Halloween and the holiday season will be here. Don’t get caught by surprise!

Take the time now to tackle the early fall home maintenance schedule. You can tuck the house in before winter sets in. It’s the perfect time to start cleaning up from the summer fun.

• Roof repair: August is a good time to inspect your roof. Check for integrity issues such as loose shingles, damaged roof flashing, moss, and rust. Most cleanup and repairs are simple. But it is much easier to complete when it is warm and dry.

Rug doctor: With the warm weather, now is a good time to clean your carpets. Keep your windows open and let the breeze flow through afterward to dry and freshen carpets. Clean, fresh carpets are a great way to get ready for the next season.

Clean yard tools of any excess grime, dirt, and debris. Change your mower’s spark plug, oil, and filters as prescribed in the owner’s guide, and sharpen blades. Properly maintained, yard tools (even the mower!) should last a lifetime.

Grill power: Empty any drip trays and soak in a pail of soapy water. Remove grates and heat plates to soak and scrub. Implements vary from grill brush to newspaper and vinegar or a “green friendly” half an onion on a grill fork. Reassemble and cover the grill to protect it from weather and pests.

It’s in the air: Air leaks waste energy and can be easy access points for all kinds of pests. Check the weather stripping around doors and windows and don’t forget to check the attic. Up there, spray-in foam insulation can provide added protection but be careful not to close off any needed vents.

The heat is on: Is it time to have the furnace inspected? Hopefully the air filter has been changed every six months or so. Check with the tech: If the furnace is 10 to 15 years old, and takes longer to heat up, consider replacement.

Window treatment: Decrease energy bills by up to 30% by replacing any single-pane windows with double or triple-pane. For a little extra, get multi-pane window sealed with a neutral gas to improve insulation further.

No, you don’t have to do it all now!

Plan to do one or two projects every week and your fall maintenance program won’t seem like such a burden.