Fall and Winter Home Checklist

Now that Fall is officially here it is time to think about getting your home ready for the cold winter months ahead. We have compiled a checklist to help get you get ready.

1. Change Furnace Filters. Dirty filters restrict airflow and increase energy demand. During the heating season filters should be checked and/or changed once a month.

2. Winterize your AC and Water Lines. Simply drain any hoses and air conditioner pipes, and make sure you don’t have excess water pooled in equipment. Have an HVAC contractor tune up your
furnace and winterize your AC equipment at the same time. Turn off any exterior water spigots and store away drained hoses.

3. Dodge the Drafts. Caulk around windows and doors. If gaps between siding and window or door frames are bigger than the width of a nickel you need to reapply exterior caulk. Silicone caulk is the best for exterior use because it will not shrink. Also adding weather stripping around doors will help keep out the drafts.

4. Clean the gutters. If your gutters are full of debris water can back up against the house damaging roof, siding, wood trim, and it can cause leaks or ice damns. You can typically pay $100 to $250 for this service depending on size of home. Also look for missing or damaged gutters and fascia boards.

5. Drain your lawn sprinkling/irrigation system. This will prevent freezing and leaks. A professional can help with this task.

6. Prune shrubs and trees. Most horticulturalists recommend waiting to prune until winter when they have been dormant and just before spring growth begins. Check with your local nurseries and gardeners to get specific advice about plants in your region.

7. Take advantage of any tax credits. Various local, state, and federal incentives exist to encourage the use of efficient windows, doors, insulation, roofing, HVAC, water heaters, and alternative energy technologies, like solar power.

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