We often get pretty excited to do spring cleaning, to clear out the remnants of winter and get ready to let the sunshine in. But do you do the same when the leaves start turning and a chill comes in the air?
|By Jean-Pol GRANDMONT (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons|
Inspect Your Roof
Obviously, you should hire a qualified professional for this task, but fall and winter weather can often be very hard on your roof. Steady rains, freezing cold, and even sleet and snow can wreak havoc with your roof. Making sure that you get any small problems taken care of before bad weather comes and keep a small problem small and eliminate any potential emergencies later on in the season.
Clean Gutters and Direct Drainage
One way that you can help prevent future roof damage is to make sure that your gutters are clean and your downspouts are pointed in the right direction. Blocked gutters can cause rainwater to move onto your roof instead of quickly away, and any blockages can turn into ice blocks in colder weather. Keeping your drainage directed in the correct way will keep excess water away from your foundation and windows, preventing leaks.
Inspect Your Chimney/Fireplace
Make sure that nothing is blocking your chimney and that the damper works in your fireplace. Nobody wants to start a fire only to have their living room fill up with smoke!
Get Heater Serviced
Get your heat pump or furnace inspected, to ensure that everything is working properly. Doing so before the cold weather months can help you save money and, of course, keep you and your family comfortable during the most frigid months. Fixing any problems can also help you pay less in utility bills!
Seal Cracks Around Doors and Windows
Has your weatherstripping around your doors broken down? Do you feel a draft from certain areas? Inspect your windows and doors and caulk/replace anything that is allowing cold air in. This process could involve a simple Saturday afternoon DIY project or need more professional intervention--consult a professional if you are unsure about how to proceed.