With fall officially in full swing, it’s time to start thinking about preparing your home for the cold winter months ahead. While Texas may not experience extreme conditions, there are a handful of beneficial fall projects to ensure your house runs efficiently during the winter. Not only will these fall home maintenance tips ensure your house is safe and efficient, but they will also save you money. We’ve put together a fall home checklist complete with interior and exterior projects so you can feel confident your family will stay warm, and your house will be protected during winter.
Fall Home Maintenance Checklist
1. Clean Your Gutters
On our home checklist, one of the most important fall tasks for homeowners is cleaning the gutters. During the spring and summer months, leaves and debris can become lodged in gutters, leading to significant damage during freezing winter conditions. If debris is left in the gutters, it can form ice dams and creep underneath the shingles and sheathing of your roof, creating moisture damage.
2. Inspect Your Roof
While you’re on the ladder cleaning your gutters, take a peek at your roof and assess for any potential holes, cracks, or areas that would be susceptible to moisture seeping through the exterior material. In addition, sweep off any excess material, such as debris, that is consolidated on your roof.
3. Disconnect All Hoses
As temperatures drop in late fall, homeowners should disconnect all exterior hoses to prevent the hose and spigot from freezing and bursting. This step is crucial in winterizing your house. Completing this task can prevent a potential headache and major hit to your savings account.
Another option would be to purchase a faucet cover from the hardware store. The faucet cover is a waterproof shell that easily attaches to the side of your house, protecting and insulating your exterior faucet.
For homeowners with a ground sprinkler system, we recommend a sprinkler blowout and following similar winterizing steps to eliminate the risk of freezing and damaging equipment.
4. Check or Replace Your Furnace Filter
Dust and debris can build up over time. To ensure your furnace will operate efficiently throughout the long winter months, check the quality of your furnace filter before the cold temperatures arrive. By completing this step, your furnace will run smoothly and ensure clean air circulates in your home. In addition, replacing the furnace filter will eliminate unnecessary strain on the motor and decrease the potential for problems to arise.
5. Check Your Water Heater
After you’re finished replacing your furnace filter, stop to check out your water heater. Typically your water heater is located next to your furnace, making it convenient to check both items off your fall home maintenance checklist in one fell swoop. To reduce potential problems, it is recommended that your water heater is maintained once a year. The tank should be flushed each year, and the valves and anode rods should be checked. These are a few small measures you can do yourself without hiring an HVAC professional.
6. Caulk Cracks or Voids In Windows & Doors
Double-checking your window and door seals for potential cracks or voids is a relatively easy project. Unfortunately, caulk tends to become less efficient after five years, so if you notice a cracked spot, run to your local hardware store to grab some new caulk. It only takes a few minutes to apply and will cure within 24 hours. This will reduce condensation from seeping into the window sills and creating significant damage over time.
Additional Small Fall Projects
Here are a few additional fall tips for homeowners who find themselves looking for more winter preparation projects:
- Cleaning the grill & replacing parts
- Clean exterior dryer vent
- Checking Smoke Detectors
- Yard clean-up
Life At Lakeside
Enjoy the winter months with your family in your new home in the Texas Hill Country. With floor plans from Highland, Coventry, and Lennar, you can cozy up next to the fireplace in your new Lakeside home. Contact Lakeside at Tessera to schedule a tour today.