As summer gives way to fall, the leaves change color, the weather turns cooler, and how you maintain and repair your home also makes a transition. Instead of protecting your home against the hot and humid weather of summer, your attention shifts to keeping the inside of your home as warm, insulated, and comfortable as possible.
To accomplish this, you should have a fall home checklist to follow, so you can catch any potential problems before winter rolls around.
Inspect Your Home’s HVAC System
An HVAC system is one of the most expensive things in the home to replace, so it needs to be inspected and maintained every year to make sure it is working safely and properly. Before it starts to get cold, install a fresh, high-quality air filter on your furnace and schedule an HVAC professional to clean and service it.
If your HVAC system needs to be replaced, contact your gas or electric company to see if they are offering any incentives for homeowners who upgrade their systems to more eco-friendly models.
Inspect Your Home’s Hot Water Heater
In the fall and winter, your hot water can lose a lot of its heat by the time it gets from the tank to your tap. This is because, all too often, the pipes are left exposed in chilly parts of the home, like the basement or crawlspace. Wrap insulation around any hot-water pipes that are exposed, and you’ll not only help preserve more hot water but also reduce your fall and winter energy bills.
Another thing you can do to help conserve hot water is to wrap your water heater with a specially-designed, insulated blanket.
Inspect Your Thermostat
Is your thermostat not working as well as it should be? Is it the old, non-programmable type? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then it is time for an upgrade. Installing a programmable thermostat will help keep your energy bills down and make your home more comfortable, day and night.
Perform a Whole House Energy Audit
There are hundreds of different ways your home could be losing heat. Performing an energy audit will help you find most of them. A thorough energy audit involves checking for drafty air leaks around electrical outlets, wall switches, attic access doors, baseboards, fireplace dampers, plumbing pipes, windows, doors, and other areas.
Wherever you find drafts, use caulk, weatherstripping, duct tape, foam gaskets, spray foam sealant, or any other suitable solution to stop the loss of air through the affected area.
Consider Installing a Humidifier
In the fall and winter, most parts of the United States become dry, as the humid weather of summer has moved on. This dryness can be multiplied in your home’s interior, as the air must pass through the flames of your furnace before reaching you. In order to keep your home free from the dangers of dry, static-filled air, have a humidifier installed on your HVAC system.
By following this simple checklist, you can make your home more comfortable and energy efficient this fall and winter. Best of all, these jobs are so easy, you can do them over the course of a weekend.