September is in the books and it’s on to October! Fall is finally real and it’s time to begin preparations for the winter. To do this you must complete a few simple tasks involving the exterior of your home.
Before the weather gets too cold, all garden hoses should be removed from their outdoor faucets. When freezing temperatures hit, water that’s backed up in the hoses and faucets can damage your home’s plumbing. Make sure to also turn off all water supply valves for the outdoors faucets.
Fill Cracks & Gaps
Using exterior caulk, go around the outside of your home and fill in any cracks. Common areas to fill with caulk include window and door frames, around the entrance to plumbing lines, and the area between the exterior trim and siding. This will prevent moisture from getting inside the structure of the house.
The fall season brings thousands of dead leaves to your property, with a lot of them falling into your gutters. Clean out your gutters of any leaves and debris to prevent blockages that could lead to overflowing, roof leaks, and property flooding. This may need to be done a few times during the fall.
Here are the steps:
- Grab a ladder and position it safely against the house. Climb the ladder with an empty bucket, a trowel, and a pair of gloves in hand.
- Put on the gloves and begin scooping out any leaves, twigs, and other debris with the trowel. Place the contents in the empty bucket until the entire gutter system is mostly cleared.
- Once the large debris has been removed, climb the ladder again, but this time with the hose. Spray the hose using a powerful nozzle to flush out any remaining debris from the gutters and downspouts.
- If the downspout becomes clogged, try and remove the blockage from the ground level. After removing the blockage, spray the hose up into the downspout to make sure it has been fully cleared.
- Lastly, make your way back up the ladder with the hose. Give the gutter system one last flush so that all of the debris has been cleared.
Making sure your roof is fit to survive the winter is very important. Finding out if your roof is susceptible to leaks or that it can’t hold the weight of ice and snow should be done in the fall, not in the middle of winter. Have your roof’s shingles and flashing inspected and replace any that are damaged.
It’s best to take care of this problem now, because you really won’t want to be on the roof on a frigid day in the middle of winter.
Damaged shingles can cause slow leaks or even mini floods and they’re often caused by rusted nails or fallen tree branches. All you need to do is remove the affected shingles with a pry bar and nail a new piece in place.
Add Insulation To The Attic
Head up into your attic and take a look at the insulation. If it’s not as high, or higher than the ceiling joists, it’s time to add more.
We recommend using R-49 – R-60 and make sure you spread the material out, without leaving any low spots.
Seal Up Windows And Doors
Don’t leave any door or window out when it comes to sealing and weatherstripping. Lots of homeowners only think about the front and back doors, but cold air can enter through side doors and basement doors, and any window in the house, too!
Cover Exhaust Vents
Especially those connected to the clothes dryer and the whole-house fan. If you leave the outside vents open or uncovered, you’ll be losing warm air from inside of the house which can cause energy bills to rise.
Starting your fall maintenance early will give you the time you need to make sure your home is in good shape for the winter season. When you need an expert installer to help repair your roof, siding, or gutters, contact Preferred Exterior. To learn more, or to schedule a free estimate, give us a call at (516) 354-7252.