Vancouver’s rainy season is almost upon us. The days are getting noticeably shorter, and the leaves are beginning to turn. Use this handy list to prepare your home for autumn weather and help prevent damage and losses.
Do you need help finishing any lingering yard work or home repairs? Give me a call! I can recommend professionals in almost any home related field – like contractors, designers, landscape companies, junk removal services, handy people, and more.
Out in the garden
- Aerate and fertilize your lawn for fresh, lush growth in the spring.
- Remove spent annuals and mulch perennials.
- Plant spring bulbs.
- Trim shrubs and trees to prevent storm damage and maintain visibility to prevent burglaries.
- Clean up yard equipment such as lawn mower and string trimmers.
- If you expect freezing weather, drain garden hoses and store them indoors to protect them.
- Make sure snow blower works properly and is ready for winter.
Up on the roof
- Clean and inspect gutters and downspouts and ensure adequate drainage. Look for leaking, misaligned, or damaged gutters, downspouts, hangers, gutter guards, and strainers.
- Inspect your roof for damaged, warped or missing shingles. Although you should always hire a qualified professional to inspect and repair the roof, you can use binoculars to conduct a preliminary survey from the ground. Check the flashing around roof stacks, vents, skylights, and chimneys as possible sources of leakage.
- Hire a chimney sweep to inspect and clean your wood burning fireplace.
- Check eaves and gables for holes or openings. Install screens to prevent birds, rodents or other vermin from entering.
Outside the home
- Check windows and doors for gaps and apply caulking and weather stripping as needed.
- Check walls and foundation for cracks and make necessary repairs.
- Check attic and crawlspace for signs of moisture.
- Check exterior lights and replace bulbs for proper working order.
- Cover air-conditioning unit outside to prevent debris and winter weather.
- Cover and store outdoor furniture.
- Check and inspect decks. Fall is a great time to restain if needed.
Inside the home
- Change the furnace filter for fire safety and air quality. Check your owner’s manual to see how often your furnace filter needs to be changed.
- Have your furnace and heating system inspected by a professional.
- Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms and change batteries.
- Make sure your fire extinguisher is in working order.
- Reverse your ceiling fan. A ceiling fan should run counter clockwise in the fall and winter to help press warm air down.
- Clean your humidifiers regularly during the heating season. Bacteria and spores can develop in a dirty water tank resulting in unclean moisture misting out into your room.
- Got a sump pump? Now is the time to test it to make sure it’s working properly.
If you need a professional to report on functionality, wear and tear, safety and maintenance, a home inspector will be able to help. Most inspectors offer Owner’s Maintenance Inspections in addition to Pre and Post Purchase Inspection services. See Breathe! And get a home inspection for advice on choosing a qualified home inspector.