It’s officially fall; while we’re enjoying the beautiful weather and the leaves, it’s time to start getting ready for the cooler weather of winter in south Florida.
There aren’t many tasks on a fall to-do list that are difficult. Some are best left to a professional. The key is to know which ones you can do yourself, and which ones you should let someone else take care of.
Walk around the exterior of your home and look for cracks where masonry meets siding. These gaps can allow water in. The result is damage to your masonry and foundation. If you aren’t sure how to seal cracks in masonry, call a professional.
- Examine entry points for pipes and wires, and get a good look at all of your window and door frames. You’re looking for any gaps or cracks where heat can escape and cold air can enter. Leaking air can account for a 20% increase in heating costs. These, you can fix yourself if you’re moderately handy with caulk and weather stripping. Again, if you’re not sure what you’re doing, caulk can be a messy project; call a professional.
- If you have them, it’s time to install your storm windows and screens.
- From the ground, give your roof a once-over. If you notice any loose or missing shingles, call a roofing professional. If your roof is missing shingles, the interior of your home can sustain water damage from rain. And it’s not just the drywall you should be worried about; if water gets into your home, it can affect electrical, plumbing, and heating and cooling systems.
- Have your air conditioning and heating system tuned-up and checked earlier rather than later. If your air conditioning and heating system is in tip-top shape, it will run more efficiently, be less likely to break down, and even last longer. Scheduling your visit early means you’ll get the appointment time you want and be prepared for any sudden cold snaps.
- Switch your ceiling fans to rotate clockwise, which will bring warmer air to you instead of way up on the ceiling.
- Change and test the battery in every smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector to ensure they are ready to do their job. Half of all home fires occur in December through February.