Welcome, Fall!

Well, it’s officially fall!  The weather in San Antonio is not as cool as I would like it to be, but it’s not as hot either so there’s hope that cooler weather is coming!  This weekend, if the weather guys can be trusted!

With cooler weather on the way it’s time to prepare your home for the change.  Here are a few tips for things to take care of now in anticipation of fall and winter.  If you live in snow country, there are probably some additional steps you need to take–I can’t comment on those because snow is not part of my winter experience, thankfully!

So, here are some things to check on around the house:

1. Windows and doors–check weatherstripping, seals, caulk, etc.  You certainly don’t want the heat you’re paying for going outside!  If  you see cracks or can feel air coming out, time to re-seal!

2. Roof–best done by a professional, but check the roof for any damage, particularly if you’ve had extreme weather events, like a hail storm.

3. Gutters–again, best done by a professional for safety’s sake. Gutters should be cleaned and clear so they can flow freely.  If you want to try it yourself, be sure to practice ladder safety!

4. Smoke detectors–time to change those batteries.  And remember to check carbon monoxide detectors as well.

5. Energy–if you haven’t already, this is a good time to invest in a programmable thermostat.  When used correctly, it can pay for itself in energy savings, winter and summer!

6. Your lawn–don’t let leaves pile up on your lawn.  Mulch with a mower or rake and bag them for disposal.  Leaves can kill the grass underneath if just left on top.  My pool lawn has had enough stress with heat and lack of rain–no need to make it work any harder!

7. Fireplace and firewood–have your fireplace checked for soot build-up and swept if needed before you use it for a cozy evening.  And be sure to store firewood away from your house.  It’s recommended that you not store firewood inside or too near the house due to the possibility of termite infestation–firewood piled up near the house is what’s known as a “conducive condition”.

8. Lawn equipment–you won’t be using it during the winter, so be sure to store it away correctly–empty any unused fuel from lawnmowers to prevent sediment build-up and for fire safety.

With a couple of exceptions, most of these tasks can be done on your own and with little effort/expenditure.  A good weekend project.  Be safe and enjoy the change to a new season!