Autumn Seasonal Checklist: October, November, December
Autumn in the Rockies. Colorado is a spectacular place to live in any season and Autumn has always been one of my favorites.
As homeowners, October is the best time to perform winterization maintenance around your home. Here are few things that should be done this time of year.
- It is time to blow out your sprinklers. Shutting down the water alone is not enough, it is highly recommended they be blown out as well. If this is something you can do yourself, so much the better. But, if you can’t perform this task yourself, finding someone to help is easy enough, we have all seen the yard signs posted; “Blow out your Sprinklers.” You can give one of these guys a call.
- Rake/Blow the leaves that have fallen. Fallen leaves will create mold spores if left on their own. They hold moisture next to decks and other wood members that accelerate rot. They plug gutters and downspouts which can lead to siding and fascia damage, so cleaning of your gutters should be done as well.
- If you do use your hose, make sure to disconnect it before going in for the night. This is a good rule until spring thaw. Frozen hose bibs can cause severe damage to the interior of the home that can many times can go unnoticed, (especially if you have a crawlspace). Be vigilant about your hose connections from October until May.
- Check to see if your attic cover has insulation. Many of us have done this very thing; We get into our attic over the summer and that pesky piece of loose insulation that hovers over the attic cover fights with us at every turn. We finally pitch it to the side thinking we’ll deal with it later. We never do. But that piece of insulation is important. It prevents heat loss into the attic space which can lead to condensation during frigid cold weather extremes in the winter. This is the time to make sure it is properly placed.
- Winterize your gas machines. I try to wait until leaves have fallen so I can mulch as much as I can into the lawn, but at some point, you need to weed, cut your grass and blow the leaves for the final time. When you know you are putting the machines away for the winter, put a little “sta-bil” through the engine (according to directions) to ensure adequate season start up.
- Have your furnace serviced and cleaned. This is very important. Making sure your furnace is in good working order is an important step in keeping your family safe for the colder months. Included with this is the servicing of your humidifier, if one is installed, changing your furnace filter regularly as well as cleaning of the air ducts.
- Other things I like to do before the first snow include, washing the exterior of the house. (This gets rid of the miller and spider homes that have accumulated). Staining/ painting of decks and fences. And making sure caulking around windows and doors is refreshed. Fertilizing your lawn as well as cleaning your gutters, possibly multiple times as the leaves fall is also needed. I also recommend thoroughly cleaning and dusting your home prior to cold weather shut-ins.
And, as always, have a home inspection performed. A seasonal checklist only covers the most obvious issues. We only think of having a home check up done by a professional when we first buy the home. But, a home inspection can many times reveal issues that have gone unnoticed, making sure your most important possession continues to be well cared for.