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15 tips to Prepare your Home for the Fall and Winter

Having a home you enjoy is important for many things, including comfort, relaxation, and also joy. In fact, studies have shown that a person’s happiness is related to the environment they live in, and how comfortable it is for them. The environment can affect our homes in a variety of ways. One of the biggest includes the changing seasons throughout the years and most of all fall and winter. It’s important to begin preparing your home for fall and winter even before the start of the cold seasons. Not only does this help in keeping your home comfortable, but also in aiding to prevent damage that the environment and seasons can cause. Leaving repairs to the last minute is a sure way to add stress, time, and cost to any possible problems in the future.

Always be Ready

If you’re a new homeowner, you might be wondering why it’s important to begin preparing your home for fall and winter ahead of time. Unfortunately, leaving preparations and much-needed repairs to the last minute can end up proving costly, and dangerous. Preparing for hurricanes, rain, tornadoes, increased wind speeds, and any other inclement weather can save your house and your life. It can be difficult to figure out what ways to prepare are best, and how to go about paying for repairs. But, not to worry, renovations and repairs can be easy if you do continuous maintenance and catch problems in time to fix them. In addition, do it yourself, or DIY projects can help you cut down on labor costs in order to help you follow through on much needed seasonal preparations. If you’d like to know more about preparing your home for fall and winter, these 15 tips can help you out with your renovation journey. Make sure to talk to the best contractors in your area about home improvement services for any additional help as well.

1. Check your HVAC system

The first thing you should check when preparing your home for fall and winter is your heating, ventilation, and cooling system, also known as an HVAC system. An HVAC system can last for as long as 20 years, but in between those years must be properly maintained. This can be done with the help of residential heating services, or you can do some aspects of HVAC maintenance yourself. You should replace filters if possible, and also ensure that your HVAC system is properly insulated. Insulation can go a long way in keeping your HVAC system functioning and keep your home warm for the fall and winter.

2. Repair Roof Leaks

It can be easy to forget about a leaking roof, especially in the months before the Fall and Winter. However, a leak can affect the insulation and beams of your house and can lead to worse water damage. Seek help to address roof repairs before the Fall and Winter months, and ensure the proper roofing materials are used. For instance, tile roofing is prone to cracks, and after that crack is 3 inches long, your roofer must install a new tile instead of only sealing it. Roofing can be the most costly of your repairs, but it is well worth it when preparing your home for fall and winter.

3. Install New Flashing

It’s one thing to fix your roof tiles and leaks, but you should also make an effort to install flashing to reinforce your roof as well. Flashing, especially in areas where the roof is prone to leaks, such as the valleys of your roof, can help prevent further water damage. In addition, putting flashing at the very top of your roof can help to protect it against rising wind speeds during the cold winter months as well.

4. Clean your Gutters

Cleaning your gutters is important when preparing your home for fall and winter months. Clogged gutters can lead to backup and drainage that can seep into your roof, and drip down into your foundation. Also, gutters that leak also produce icicles and make water freeze onto your shielding. This can be extremely hazardous for those inside your home and also ruin your shielding as well. Obtaining the help of gutter services can be extremely helpful. Gutters are at the very top of your home and can be hard to reach at times. Make sure to not just clean your gutters during the fall and winter, but throughout the year as well.

5. Prepare your Sprinkler System

Nothing is worse than having ice block your sprinkler system, burst your pipes, and prevent you from watering your grass and plants come springtime. Winterizing your sprinkler system can save you hundreds in repair costs. To winterize your sprinkler system, powerful air compressors are used to blow out the remaining water and drain your system. Utilize plumbing services to help you winterize your system, set it to the proper PSI, and also re-calibrate your system once the snow is cleared. Also, make sure your sprinkler system isn’t aiming water towards your basement, as this can cause problems to arise in your foundation.

6. Cover your Pool

Cleaning your pool is never fun, and can be a hassle, and hard work especially during the chilly fall and winter months. Have a pool cover to protect your pool and outside areas from excess leaves and debris that might fall during the autumn season. You can also use pool covers during regular months, to prevent water spillage, save you money on energy bills, and continue to have a warm pool if you still need to use it for exercise or other reasons.

7. Renovate your Kitchen

Your kitchen is an important part of your life, and many say is the central part of a home. During the winter months, you might find yourself home more due to dangerous weather conditions like snow and rain. Renovate your kitchen beforehand in order to be as comfortable as possible while spending more time at home. Simple things such as updated appliances that save you on energy costs can prove to be a lifesaver. Countertop installation can also help you have more space to cook, and cabinet restoration can also help you have more space to store items. The choices are endless, and not as costly as you’d think for simple renovations. Renovating your kitchen and preparing your home for fall and winter can be the best thing for you and your family to enjoy warm meals at home!

8. Treat Exterior Wood

Exterior wood can end up getting damaged during the harsh winter and fall months. Sealing your wood with a good sealant, painting your wood, and adding caulking to any visible cracks can go a long way in helping protect your exterior wood. This can include your patio, deck area, and any trimming that is around your porch as well. With so many places in your home, it’s no wonder treating and winterizing your exterior wood is one of the best ways of preparing your home for fall and winter.

9. Seal all Doors and Windows

Windows and doors can least years when well-maintained, and are crucial in keeping your home free of cold drafts and warm during the cold winter and fall months. However, from time to time, sealing can become an issue, as it can rip and tear screens. Ensure before the cold season comes around that you check all windows and doors to make sure they are properly sealed. Sealing your windows and doors can be as easy as adding sealant, or rubber to the windows and doors. Repairing screens can also be relatively simple. You don’t want to wait to the last minute to do this, however, as once the cold seeps in, it can drastically affect your energy bills and increase costs.

10. Fill and Seal Driveways

Driveways are prone to damage from the cold months, and this can be one of the more tedious repairs to fix once damaged. Your driveway is essential for parking your vehicle, walking in and out of your home, and also if you have children, for acting as their play area. Damage can be costly and heavily interfere with your life. Make sure to add concrete and proper masonry work to have your driveway ready for the snow and rain. Sealing an asphalt driveway is also simple and cost-effective if you do it yourself. Such preparations should be inspected afterward to ensure no water gets into cracks and freezes into the driveway as well.

11. Clean out your Chimney

Your chimney can help keep you warm during the winter and fall months, and cleaning it out is essential when preparing your home for fall and winter months. A chimney place builds up what is known as creosote over time, which is in essence debris inside your chimney. This creosote becomes highly flammable and is the cause of many house and chimney fires. Hire professional chimney cleaning services to ensure you have everything cleaned and pristine before lighting your chimney again. Take this time to shop for firewood also, before residents begin to take up supplies by the truckload.

12. Prepare your Flooring

Your flooring can be susceptible to damage come the winter months, and it’s important to prepare your household for this. Not only should you consult the help of floor cleaning services year-round to help your floors stay clean, but also to prepare them for stripping and adding a finish. Adding four to five layers of finishing to a floor helps to keep its shine, and also to protect it from the tough shoes that are coming into contact with it. Boots full of soil, snow, mud, and other debris can leave your floor less than appealing. To help this, install some mats both outside, as well as inside your home. Clean your mats often, and when wet let them dry for at least 24 hours before placing them on your floors again.

13. Prevent Flooding

Flooding can occur at any time of the year with the coming of rains, storms, and worst of all hurricanes. When preparing your home for fall and winter, you should definitely include protecting against flooding in there as well. Ensure that there are no holes near your foundation where water can pool up, freeze over, and seep into the basement. This is crucial to prevent problems to your foundation, including rot. It’s also important to make a safety plan, take out any valuable items from your basement that is prone to flooding, and also make sure electrical outlets are elevated slightly off the ground as well.

14. Prepare for Insects

During the winter and fall months, not only will you be spending lots of time indoors, but so will lots of insects that find comfort within the walls of your home. Your attic and basement are two places that insects can find themselves burrowing in. Make sure all trees are trimmed down as far from your home as possible. Check for any holes that should be sealed, and put up traps if possible for smaller insect infestations. Consult the help of pest control as well to make your home as insect-free as possible.

15. Prepare your Garage

Preparing your garage for the cold months is often overlooked when preparing your home for fall and winter. Nevertheless, because your car is stored in your garage, and you might do projects in there as well, it’s important to prepare your garage for possible incoming snow and cold. Look for ways to incorporate your heating system into your garage. For instance, if you have a forced-air furnace, extending the duct system into your attached garage can be a simple and cheap way to heat up your garage. If your door is broken, make sure you get proper garage door repair to keep out cold air, the snow, and other elements.

Prepare Year-Round

The most important thing to remember when preparing your home for fall and winter is to start early. You don’t want to be suffering in the cold, trying to improve on repairs and renovations. Seek out the best contractors, maintain your home year-round, and enjoy your home during the cold seasons.

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