Although fall is my favorite season, it is also a time to do some home maintenance to prepare for it. Here I will provide some easy tips to help keep your home in grade A+ shape. We'll start it off with taking care of your trees, shrubs, and other vegetation. To help prevent leaves and debris from clogging up your gutters, you can trim your tree branches back away from the home. Clogged gutters shorten the life span of your gutters, as well as, divert water around your roof and lets water fall near your foundation. All water should drain at least 3-5 feet away from your home to prevent any soil movement/erosion near the home that can cause settlement. An easy task to prevent major damage to your home and your wallet. Keeping your shrubs and bushed trimmed back about a foot away from the home is another great idea. Any vegetation that touches the home can trap moisture onto the exterior and shorten the lifespan of the material. Also invites critters and pests to the home which leads to my next tip.
Seal any gaps and cracks around the home where bugs and critters could enter. You can start with the weather stripping around your doors and windows. On top of sealing those gaps to keep bugs out of your home, it also saves you a lot of money on your energy bills every month to keep your heat and air conditioning from escaping through gaps. Take a lap around your home and look at the caulk around the windows and any penetrations. Any spots where your hose bibbs might be, or your #hvac system like your air conditioner is likely has the suction lines penetrating the home. Caulking or sealing these penetrations can help keep your home air tight as well.
Shut off your hose bibbs and store your hoses. You want to protect your water pipes from freezing temperatures and any damage that could be caused such as bursting and then causing any water damage. There should be shut off valves near your hose bibbs around the home. Drain the hose lines and store them somewhere where they won't freeze and get damaged as well.
If your a big fan of getting cozy by the fireplace, consider having a professional chimney sweep evaluate your chimney and clean it. Especially if you have a wood or solid fuel burning fireplace, they should be cleaned at least once a year to prevent any safety hazards or house fires.
Over time, the chimney/flue can build up soot and creosote which is flammable and corrosive. There are 3 phases of creosote and it's best to catch it before it gets too bad.
These are just a couple of tips for you homeowners out there. Feel free to comment and share.
Risley Home Inspections