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Fall Exterior Home Maintenance Tips

October 2, 2009

Plan ahead and take the time to prepare your home for fall from the outside in. Plan ahead and tackle it bit by bit before the snow falls. I’m not really sure what happened to September. I know I didn’t miss it altogether and my calendar doesn’t lie, but wow where is the time going!?  The last few days sure have had crisp starts here in the GTA and seeing as how I’ve lit the pilot on the furnace this evening,  I figured this article was more than appropriate.

Home maintenance is an important aspect of being a home owner. Let’s face it, you have a lot of money invested in your home whether it’s a small starter home or a luxury, lakefront home.  Whether you’re a DIYer like me or you simply want to know what your maintenance contractor needs to do, there are some things that warrant paying attention to.

Fall is here whether you like it or not so you might as well make sure you’re home is ready for the colder weather.  In this first installment let’s cover the checklist for making sure your home’s exterior is in good shape.

Everyone has a lot going on in their life, so be reasonable and don’t leave it all for one day.  Prepare your list and break it up into manageable chunks – whatever works for you.  This is by no means a complete list – if I’ve missed something, please comment and let me know – I will ammend as we go.

  • Check and clean/clear your eaves troughs and downspouts making sure they are free and clear of debris, leaves and secure to your house;
  • Have your chimney(s) inspected to make sure they are in good condition and free of obstructions and nests;
  • Make sure all exterior vents (dryers, exhaust fans, furnace, etc) from the house are clear of blockages and have good airflow;
  • Replace window screens with storm windows;
  • Check your windows exterior paint and all caulking around windows. Repaint or recaulk where necessary;
  • Check to make sure all exterior doors close properly and check for any air leaks – replace the weather stripping if needed;
  • Cover your air conditioner unit and any pool equipment;
  • Make sure that the ground/soil around your home slopes away from the foundation wall, to help keep your basement dry;
  • Rake your lawn thoroughly and use a suitable fall fertilizer to prepare your lawn for winter. Be sure to check your local by-laws to ensure you comply with the local requirement;
  • Winterize landscaping by cutting down seasonal flowers and plants, storing outdoor furniture, prepare garden beds and protect any young bushes and shrubs for winter;
  • Drain and store all exterior water hoses. Shut off water supply to outside faucet/taps and leave valve open to allow proper drainage;
  • If you have a sump pump, check to ensure proper operation. Check drain lines for obstructions and leaks;
  • If you have a septic system have your tank inspected and levels checked in case it needs to be pumped out before Spring.  Septic tanks should be pumped out at least once every three years;
  • Check your driveway and walkways. If you have an asphalt driveway check to see if it needs re-sealing – winter weather is always harshest on older driveways and walkways.

Making sure your home is properly prepared for winter will help protect your investment and give you peace of mind.  Our winters can be severe, so doing the work now while the days are nice will make it much easier than waiting until Jack Frost is nipping at your nose.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. October 30, 2009 9:27 pm

    very nice! I always wanted to find something like this .
    Thank you!

  2. January 4, 2010 7:12 am

    thanks! very helpful post!! like the template btw 😉

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