The thought of doing outdoor work in the cold weather isn’t overly appealing. With the fall season here and some cooler weather in store, it’s time to start thinking about that to-do list to make sure you don’t have any unexpected surprises when winter weather hits.
Fix Cracks in Concrete and Asphalt
Especially important if you live in an area that has a lot of freezing and thawing in the months to come, sealing your driveway or fixing small cracks now can prevent you from ending up with larger ones come next year. While you might not need to tackle this job every year, fixing up your driveway every two or three years helps keep your driveway looking its best and prevents more serious work from being required later.
As the leaves start to fall, it’s important to make sure that they get cleared out of gutters. By not cleaning gutters, you increase the odds of ice buildup during the winter, possible insect infestation, and improper draining which can result in foundation and/or landscape damage.
Insulate and Turn Off Outdoor Plumbing
Draining outdoor faucets and sprinkler systems while also covering them can help prevent from being damaged from freezing during cold months. If you have any exposed plumbing that liquid normally runs through, it’s important to make sure that it’s insulated, and that it hasn’t been damaged since the prior year. Prevent frozen pipes!
Preparing Furnace/Chimney for Winter
There’s no worse time to find out your furnace is broke or your chimney isn’t ready than when you need to start using it. Before the cooler days come, check to make sure everything is working, change out your furnace filter, make sure your chimney is clear of any debris and cleaned out, and consider having things professionally inspected. Doing so will give you the confidence that you’ll have heat when you need it most.
Inspect your Roof
There are only a few things more frustrating than a leaky roof. Before winter gets here and it becomes dangerous to get on the roof, climb up and do some inspecting now. Look for cracks and wind damage on ridge shingles. Check the valleys and around vents and chimneys for damage to metal flashing. And of course, look over the entire roof for missing, curled, or damaged shingles. While you are cleaning out your gutters, you could also be keeping an eye out for large quantities of granules from the shingles, a sign that roof problems may not be too far away.
Doing these simple maintenance checks now while the weather is still nice will provide comfort and confidence that your home is ready to face whatever winter may bring.