With Fall officially here, that means that Winter is in the near distance. And if you’re here in Colorado, then you know Winter can strike at any moment! We may still have warm weather during the day, but those temperatures at night are quickly dropping. Care should be taken to both the interior and exterior of your homes (don’t forget the garage!) The list of things to do can be endless, but with a few simple items added to your to do list, you can ensure an uneventful winter season!
Clean out gutters and downspouts
Fall season means that our gutters fill up quickly, especially if you live on a property with plenty of trees. Cleaning out your gutters means you will be reducing the risk of water damage to your home and roof, when all that snow eventually starts to come down. And, of course, please be safe when doing this!
Winterize your sprinkler system
Whether you choose to do this yourself, or hire somebody to do it, blowing out your sprinkler system and shutting off any necessary valves prevents pipes from freezing and causing problems in the winter months.
Check your windows & doors
Gaps in doors and windows can result in a costly heating bill. Check for any gaps that let air in (and heat out!) and fix with putty caulk — a cost effective way to keep windows sealed properly through the summer months. Door snakes (a piece of foam that covers the inside and outside of your exterior doors) will also help keep heat from escaping.
Reverse your ceiling fans
During cooler seasons, fans should be set to have a clockwise rotation. This will help move the heated air (that rises) back down into your living space, keeping your space warmer!
Insulate your hose spigots
Remove all your hoses from your outside spigots, and drain them completely of water! Unless your water lines have valves to shut off the supply of water to the exterior spigot, it’s important to insulate them for the winter months.
Clean up your outdoor space
As much as we hate to say goodbye to enjoying our outdoor space during the warmer months, cleaning up that space means we will be ready to enjoy it again come Spring time. Remove any cushions and cover any outdoor furniture and AC units. Store items that won’t be used, such as grills, child’s toys and bird houses. Do a final round of weeding, clean up any leaves and mow the yard one last time.
Check your deck surfaces
Throughout the year, mold and mildew can buildup on deck surfaces, which can also lead to wood rot. Routine cleaning and the use of a proper sealer can help extend the life of your deck but the removal of the mold and mildew will also to protect you and your family. Surfaces covered in mold and mildew can be slippery, but with the addition of cold weather, these surfaces can be really dangerous. Save yourself a trip to the ER and keep it clean!
Check your carbon monoxide detector & smoke detectors
Checking to make sure these are properly working and have new batteries will ensure the long lasting safety of you and your family.
Replace your furnace filter
Filters should be replaced every three months, so the change of the season is a good reminder to do this. A clean filter means your heating system doesn’t have to work as hard to keep your home warm, which will also help in keeping that heating bill low. Bonus: clean filters mean less dust around the house!
Buy those Winter supplies BEFORE you need them!
Don’t wait until you have six inches of snow on the ground before you decide to get a shovel! Many hardware stores are already stocking up on items like snow shovels and salt for those icy steps. Grab them before they are sold out (likely when you need them most!) This is also a good time to pull out any winter gear such as hats and gloves, to make sure you’re prepared for those permanent cooler temperatures!