Keystone Blog

Guide to Fall Home Maintenance

Fall is the perfect time to prepare your home for winter. Colder temperatures mean you'll use different systems in your house, and some maintenance tasks can be challenging to complete in winter weather. Before cold weather arrives, you can follow a simple fall home maintenance checklist to ensure your home is ready for winter. You can hire a professional for many of these tasks, or you can complete home cleaning and repair yourself if you feel comfortable. When your safety is concerned, it’s important to work with a professional so you know maintenance is done correctly. Most tasks can be completed quickly or over a weekend, or you can make a day of it and complete everything at once! Getting your house ready for fall is simple — just follow the tips in this fall home maintenance guide to keep your home in good working order.

Interior Home Maintenance

Here are some fall home maintenance tips to help you prepare for cold weather:

Seal Interior Cracks

Over time, you might find drafts coming in around your windows and doors. Caulking and weatherstripping can seal any cracks and ensure your home stays toasty during the winter. Filling cracks can also improve your home’s energy efficiency since heating and cooling will stay inside when everything is sealed properly.

Clean Your Chimneys

It’s vital to clean your chimneys at least once a year, and fall is the perfect time to do it. Cleaning your chimneys reduces fire risk and ensures your fireplaces are ready to use when temperatures get low. While caring for your chimneys, you can also restock your firewood.

Test All GFI Circuits

GFIs are outlets often used in bathrooms and kitchens. They protect people from electric shocks by monitoring electric current. You can test whether this feature works by hitting the reset, test and reset buttons again while a device is plugged in.

Replace Household Filters

Your home has many filters you should replace at least once a year. Here are a few filters to replace in the fall:

  • Dryer filter
  • Furnace filter
  • Humidifier filter
  • Air purifier filter
  • Range hood filter

Replacing filters can help your appliances last longer and use less energy. This task is an easy way to take care of your home and keep everything running smoothly throughout the year.

Deal With Drains

If your drains are clogged, now is the time to clear them. You can use boiling water, vinegar and baking soda to clean gunk and hair from your drains. Sometimes, you may need to call a professional to help you clear stubborn blockages.

Check Alarms and Smoke Detectors

Change the batteries in your smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors once or twice a year. Check the instructions for each device and ensure you’re keeping them up-to-date. You can also check the batteries in your security systems and thermostat.

Care for Your HVAC System

Before you fire up your heating system for the winter, do a maintenance check or have a professional look over it. You should also drain your water heater to prevent buildup inside. Whatever HVAC equipment you have in your home, fall is the perfect time to ensure everything works well.

Exterior Home Maintenance

Follow these fall home maintenance steps to prepare your home’s exterior for winter temperatures. While you can complete these tasks yourself, it’s always a good idea to call a professional if you’re not comfortable with heights or sharp implements.

Trim Trees Around Your Home

Before the leaves fall and snow arrives, trim the trees around your home to keep them off the house. Trimming your trees reduces the amount of leaves in your gutters and keeps pests from traveling across tree branches into your home.

Rake up the Leaves

After the leaves fall, getting them off your grass helps keep your lawn healthy. Removing fallen leaves prevents them from blocking parts of your lawn in the spring when the grass starts growing again. You can rake them up and dispose of them or use a leaf blower to move them off the grass.

Aerate Your Lawn

Early fall is an excellent time to aerate your lawn. This process allows more air into your soil, improving grass growth. Aerating is especially useful if you have hard soil since it helps break up hard clods and stimulate root growth.

Drain Hoses and Turn Faucets Off

Draining your exterior hoses and turning all exterior faucets off is another good precaution before the weather gets cool. This'll prevent any water left inside the hose or faucet from freezing in the winter. This can cause pipes to burst and lead to costly repair water damage. Additionally, it's a good idea to insulate any exposed pipes to further protect them from freezing temperatures. Taking these steps now can help ensure that your outdoor water sources are in good working condition when spring rolls around.

Look Over the Roof

Before you experience snow, inspect your roof from the ground. If any shingles are missing or damaged, you can call a professional to repair them. It’s best to have a professional service remove debris and clean any algae off your roof.

Clean out Gutters

After all the leaves fall, be sure to clean out your gutters and downspouts. Blocked gutters can lead to water and ice damage during the winter if they can’t properly drain rain or snow. Again, it’s a good idea to call a professional to ensure this task is completed safely. You can also reduce the chances of clogged gutters by installing gutter guards.

Winterize Your Sprinkler System

If you use a sprinkler system, drain all the water before the winter. When the temperatures drop, the water can freeze and burst the pipes, damaging your sprinklers. You can either drain your sprinkler system yourself or hire a professional to do it in late fall.

Welcome Fall With Keystone Custom Homes

At Keystone Custom Homes, we aim to build homeowners the high-quality home of their dreams. We construct elegant communities in Pennsylvania, Maryland and North Carolina. Our homes are beautiful, functional and energy efficient, ensuring you get the most value for your investment. We offer various customizable floorplans, so you can find one that fits your budget and priorities. As part of our mission to give back, Keystone Custom Homes helps support education and small business loans for global families. As our company has grown, we've expanded our charitable donations even further. Contact us today to find or build your dream home. We have move-in ready homes, model homes you can visit and floorplan options so you can build a home personalized to you!