Autumn Home Preparations: A Homeowner’s To-Do List For Fall

When the sun is shining and the air is crisp with the delicious smell of ripening maple leaves, it is difficult to motivate oneself to tackle the home care-and-repair tasks that must be completed before the cold, snowy winter months ahead. Weekend projects can frustrate homeowners, especially when they pull the family away from outdoor activities that celebrate this wonderful time of year. However, there are many home preparations that truly need to be taken care of between September and November for reasons of safety. Enjoy the sunshine and warm weather of the summer and early fall months, but be sure to make time to care for your home this fall – it’s an investment that will last for years to come.

Autumn Home – Shutterstock

Important Water Repairs: Taking Care of Pipes Before Frost Hits

Sometimes, it is tempting to ignore the few random drips from a leaky faucet – the problem can seem insignificant next to bigger home repairs on our to-do lists – but it is crucial to have these issues fixed before frost forms in the pipes, making it nearly impossible to tackle. If you aren’t handy enough to fix the leak, or if you believe the problem lies further below the surface, don’t hesitate to call in a plumber to take a look at the problem. The cost of a plumber for small repairs is usually quite small, and it can save you money for repairs in the long run. Plus, you’ll save water during the winter months when fixing these leaks might be impossible because of the weather.
Outdoor plumbing must be taken care of as well. Be sure to empty and drain your garden hose, and to have all outdoor faucets checked for leaks and rust. Any underground irrigation systems must be checked and serviced before the first frost complicates the repair process. While you’re working on the water repairs, don’t forget to fertilize your garden so that growth may begin, even under the layers of snow that accumulate between December and March.

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Servicing Your Lawn, Garden, and Power Tools

Now that the season for outdoor gardening and landscaping is ending, it is the perfect time to refurbish the tools that will once again come in handy in the spring. Wearing proper safety gloves and goggles, and following the instructions provided within your manuals, remove the blades from power tools, lawnmowers, and other devices, and bring them to your local home improvement store to be cleaned and sharpened. If you are not confident in your ability to remove these blades and metal parts yourself, bring the entire appliance to the store, where they will happily assist you to help you stay safe. Once cleaned and sharpened, make sure to check your tools for any additional rust, and store the tools in a clean, cool, and dry place so that they are ready for the spring months – and so that you don’t have to “spring” for replacements. Any seasonal furniture should be brought inside of a shed to prevent cracks and other forms of damage from inclement winter weather conditions.

Heating Issues: Scheduling Inspections from Professionals and Specialists

There are many benefits of checking for drafts in your entryways, but the biggest reason is to prevent the loss of heat within the home and fight against the winter chill. If you have any drafty doors, look for door extensions or for felt protectors that cover the bottoms of your door. However, heating and cooling issues should also be checked by a professional, and not only tackled with small DIY measures. To learn more about how to prepare the heating and cooling systems of your home throughout the fall before the frost hits, it is best to schedule an appointment with a HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) specialist. Only a trained professional in heating and air conditioning in Indianapolis will be able to tell you if your Midwestern home is ready to take on the severe weather conditions of the frigid winter months. Remember, it’s never too early to start preparing for winter, as taking care of your home is a year-round process.

KateSimmons: Kate Simmons is a freelance writer and occasional blogger. If her articles got you interested, feel free to follow or reach out to her via G+ or Twitter.

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