Fall is an important time for home maintenance. You need to inspect your home and make the necessary repairs before the cold weather sets in which invites damages along. Carry out your maintenance routine before the temperatures begin to drop. Follow these 6 home maintenance tips to gear your home for winter this year.
Take a good look at your roof. If you live in a multi-story home or if your home has a steep roof, inspect it from the ground. Search for broken, missing, cracked, or curling shingles.
Exposure to the sun can cause warping, chipping, fading and other such deformities to roofs and siding materials. When moisture seeps into damaged shingles, it can cause a great amount of damage. If you see any such warning bells, call a professional to repair the roof before winter begins.
For fireplaces, make sure to check and see if it’s safe before you sit down to enjoy the warmth of the fire. If you notice any damage in the firebox, you should get it fixed. Check if the damper is functioning properly, you can use a flashlight to look up the chimney to inspect it. If there is a blockage or residue built up, there can be safety issues like the risk of a fire. Make sure to clean the chimney and get it in shape before winter begins.
If you have a furnace, get it prepared to run efficiently before the cold season sets in. Check and see if your furnace is in a good condition to work all through winter. Replace the furnace filter if required. It is advisable to call a professional to inspect your heating system and ensure optimal performance and fix any issues.
Clear your gutters if they are filled with leaves and other debris that can prevent the flow of water and clean them. Check whether the gutters are in good condition if they are attached to the home, and if the water is properly draining out from them. Clear gutters are vital to prevent water damage that can be caused due to the collection of water. If the gutters are clogged, they can cause ice dams.
Doors and windows tend to detach from their frames slightly during the winter. So it is essential to make sure that they are attached properly before the cold months begin.
Take a walk around your home and check for gaps between the doors, windows, corners formed by siding, phone lines, electrical outlets, and outdoor faucets. Weather stripping and caulking will prevent moisture from entering the cracks in addition to the preventing warm air from escaping and cold air from slipping inside.
Summer heat and moisture tend to cause wear and tear on the floors. Damaged and scratched floors should be scuff-sanded and recoated. This prevents floors from dampness.
The main place to check is the attic floor. Make sure that the insulation is installed properly. The vapor barrier on insulation needs to face down towards the living space. If the vapor barrier faces up, the insulation will trap moisture and is likely to cause water problems. You need to make slits in the vapor barrier to allow moisture to escape.
To install attic insulation, roll out insulation with the paper side out. Put small pieces of insulation between the joists on the attic floor. While doing this, take precaution not to step between the joists.
The best way to avoid cracked and frozen pipes are to turn off the water going to the outdoor hose. Run the water until the pipes are empty to avert freezing. If the pipes are exposed or located in the exterior of the walls, foam pipe insulation is the most economical option available. Sometimes, you may even need to re-insulate the exterior walls of your home to avoid freezing.
A home warranty policy covers the cost of repair and replacement of major home systems and a number of everyday use appliances. The major home systems include heating, plumbing, electrical systems and more. Most home warranty policies offer their customers with the option to add additional appliances to the list of covered items by paying an additional amount.
The average cost of a plumbing repair alone could range from $160 up to $450. You can use our home maintenance calculator to get an estimate of how much your total annual home maintenance expenses would be. The home maintenance calculator makes an estimate based on the age of the home, the age of the systems/appliances and a few other details. There are home warranty policies that are priced at $1 per day. But before you invest in a home warranty policy, remember to conduct sufficient research about the best home warranty service provider in your locality. Read reviews from existing customers before you finalize on the right company for you.
We also offer you the option of getting a free home warranty quote for your home. If you have any questions about home warranty and would like to know more, go ahead and ask us in the comments.
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