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Preparing Your Home for the Fall and Winter

 

You may not be ready for the summer to end, but your home should be. As you are storing your summer belongings and grabbing your sweatshirts, it’s important to prepare your home for the upcoming change in season. By performing these safety checks, you can feel safe knowing that your home is ready to combat the cold.

                Roof Check – Take a look at your roof and identify any damaged shingles or loose removable debris. If pieces of debris begin to mold or rot, your roofing material can breakdown. If you have experience, and feel comfortable on a roof, you can remove these items. However, calling a professional roof cleaner keeps you safe and he or she can inspect the roof from top to bottom.

                Clean Your Gutters – Removing any debris from your gutters as the summer comes to a close will help you avoid damage to your drainage system and exterior surfaces, as well as water in your basement. You should clean your gutters regularly to prevent debris build-up, corrosion and rust. You should also consider installing mesh guards to your gutters.

                Check Your Pipes – As the weather gets colder, especially during the winter months, the chance of having a burst pipe increases. When water freezes it expands, putting pressure on your pipes and possibly causing a burst or break. You should drain and winterize any pipes that could be exposed to freezing conditions.

                Test Your Smoke Detectors – Especially during the winter months when heat systems are on and fireplaces are roaring, you should be regularly testing your smoke detectors. It is also important to have a fire extinguisher easily accessible for emergencies and that it is charged and operational.

                Store Your Air Conditioners – Shutting down your air conditioner during the colder seasons helps prevent any damage to the system. If you have window air conditioners, always unplug the system before removing them. If you have central air conditioning, cover up the outdoor unit with a tarp or plastic cover to prevent damage.

                Inspect Your Heating System - Contact a trusted company to inspect your heating system. A qualified technician will inspect and confirm that the system operates efficiently and safely for you to stay warm this upcoming season.

                Fireplace and Chimney Maintenance – After using a fireplace, you should always safely remove and properly discard any ash and charred wood. It is also important to have your chimney cleaned prior to the winter months. However, this should be left to a professional. 

This summary is for general informational use only and may not include all relevant information.