- Check for Peeling Paint
Inspect exterior walls to see if any paint is peeling or blistering on the house or outbuildlings. According to Carl Minchew, Director of Benjamin Moore Paints, “Peeling paint is a sign that the existing paint film is failing and can no longer protect the side of the building. Left uncorrected, the siding itself will deteriorate, leading to expensive repairs in the future.”
- Clean the Gutters
After leaves have fallen, clean out the gutters and downspouts, flush them with water, inspect joints, and tighten brackets if necessary. Clogged gutters are one of the major causes of ice dams.
- Caulk Windows
Be sure to caulk around windows and doorframes to prevent heat from escaping. “Caulking and sealing openings is one of the least expensive maintenance jobs,” says Michael Hydeck, of Hydeck Design Build, Inc. Telford, PA, and National President, National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).
- Inspect the Roof
Make sure the roof is in good shape. Inspect for missing and loose shingles. Your roof is your first defense from the elements, and it is better to proactively deal with repairs.
- Ready the Fireplace
Have your heating system checked by a licensed heating contractor. Heating systems will use fuel more efficiently, last longer and have fewer problems if properly serviced. Make sure to examine your wood stove or fireplace insert’s door gasket for a tight seal.
- Seal the Driveway
Inspect your driveway for cracks. Clean out and repair any damage with driveway filler, then coat with a commercial sealer. Sealing the driveway now will help extend the life of the asphalt through the winter and beyond.
- Reverse Ceiling Fan
Change the direction of your ceiling fan to create an upward draft that redistributes warm air from the ceiling. 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.
- Cover Air Conditioners
Vacuum internal parts of air conditioners. Remove units from windows or wrap outside box with an approved tarp or plastic air conditioner cover.
- Clean Yard Equipment
Prepare your yard equipment for storage. This includes draining fuel from all gas-operated equipment such as lawn mowers, leaf blowers, and chain saws. Check to see that all of your snow equipment is up and running before the first flurry falls.
- Prepare Deck for Winter
Clean porch and deck furniture, and look for any needed repairs. Cover and store outdoor furniture and barbecues in a protected area. Make sure all soil is emptied from pots and planters. Dirt left in clay pots will freeze and cause the pots to crack if left outside.
Source: Bob Vila