As the winter months approach, it is a good time to do some annual maintenance on your home. Getting ready for the colder, wetter winter months means checking, repairing and readying your home to withstand the upcoming weather. Here is our winter ‘to-do’ list;
- Check and Replace any Worn Weather Stripping
Weather stripping around doors and windows plays a key role in reducing the amount of cold air that enters your home. Check for cracked or worn stripping and replace it with new, more efficient stripping. If caulking is looking worn and ragged, remove it and re-caulk with an efficient, moisture-resistant product. This will help keep the cold air out and the warm air in!
- Seal Gaps Where Insects and Cold Air can Come into Your Home
Take a close look around the exterior of your home and cover any and all gaps you find them. Use caulk to seal small gaps near the foundation of your home, or around windows. A heavy-duty screen or hardware cloth works well to cover exterior vents, allowing air to escape but preventing creatures and insects from seeking warmth in your home.
- Inspect Exterior Walls
If you have a painted exterior painted exterior, check for any cracks or blisters in the paint surface. This is a sign that a new coat of paint is needed. If left unchecked, this failing paint won’t protect your home, opening you up to much costlier repairs in the future.
- Clean Your Chimney
Built-up creosote inside the chimney can cause a house fire, so don’t fire-up that fireplace until the chimney has been cleaned of any debris, animals that have moved in, and creosote build-up. It’s good to have a professional chimney sweep come in to do this done once a year, and autumn is the perfect time. You may also want to consider adding a chimney cap to prevent animal nests or homes from being constructed in your chimney in the future.
- Clean Out and Repair Rain Gutters
You can do this job yourself, or hire someone to do it for you, but this is an essential chore to perform each autumn. Preferably, you’ll want to clean out the gutters after all the trees in your garden have finished dropping their leaves.
- Inspect the Roof
While you are up on that ladder, take time to inspect your roof. Look for cracked or broken tiles, cracks in the chimney or problems with the pointing. Problems like damaged shingles and worn-out seals around vent pipes and chimneys are much easier to remedy if you catch them early.
- Clean, Stain, and/or Seal the Deck
Autumn is the perfect time to take care of deck maintenance. At the very least, a good cleaning is recommended. Check the durability of your stain and seal then re-stain or re-seal your deck properly if necessary.
- Inspect Your Driveway for Cracks
If you find any cracks, clean them out and repair any damage with driveway filler. Follow up with a coat of commercial sealer.