Fall Maintenance Checklist
One of my clients shared this checklist with me along with an internet site that helps with managing information about your home.
Attic: Examine for evidence of any leaks. Check insulation. Check for evidence of birds, squirrels, raccoons, etc. Check for proper ventilation.
Basement or crawl space: Check for cracks or any sign of dampness or leaks
Dryer: Clean dryer vent once a year.
Electrical: Test GFCI outlets in the kitchen, bathroom, garage and exterior.
Fireplace: Inspect flues. Use a certified Chimney Sweep.
Foundation: Inspect visible areas for cracks, movement, and water damage.
Garage door: Lubricate hardware. Inspect mechanism for free travel.
Gutters and downspouts: Clean and check for leaks, misalignment, or damage. Be sure they drain away from the home’s foundation.
Heating system: Service heating system/heat pump/humidifier. Clean and replace filters if necessary. Reprogram your programmable thermostat for the heating season.
Kitchen and bathroom cabinets; dishwasher; toilets: Check under and around for leaks. Check for toilets that continue to run.
Kitchen exhaust fan: Remove and clean the filter. Clean accumulated grease deposits from the fan housing.
Lawn and patio furniture: Clean and store or cover with weatherproof material.
Outside faucets: Remove hoses in late Fall to prevent faucet freeze; install faucet covers if a hard winter is expected.
Pipes: Inspect visible pipes for leaks. Consider replacing washing machine hoses with braided steel hoses to prevent ruptures.
Plumbing shut-off valves: It sounds silly, but turn your shut-off valve off and on once a year so it doesn’t get stuck – that valve can be handy if you have a leak.
Roof: Check for leaks. Check for damaged, loose, or missing shingles. Check vents and louvers for birds, nests, squirrels, and insects. Check flashing around roof stacks, vents, and skylights for leaks.
Smoke detector: Test for proper operation and replace batteries if more than a year old. (Write the date on them so you will know when they were replaced.)
Water heater: Flush out hot water to remove accumulated sediment once a year.
Weather stripping: Check caulking and seals around windows and doors.
Managing Your Home Information
If you want to get organized on the home front, take a look at HomeSpot. It is a free website, with ads of course, that allows the homeowner to manage information about their home, including facts (paint colors, part numbers, etc), projects lists, reminders for routine maintenance, project shopping lists, etc. All in one spot rather than in a lot of different folders, notes, junk drawers, memory or not at all.