Posted on: October 25, 2016 by Goodrich & Watson
The presence of pumpkins on every porch and within every restaurant’s menu means one thing: Fall is upon us! It’s time to switch out your seasonal wardrobe, stock up for trick-or-treaters, and take stock of your Virginia Homeowners Insurance policy. That’s right: Fall is prime time to make sure you’re well covered in case a freak winter storm blows through and causes a tree to topple through your roof or some other weather-related disaster. Fall is also time to winterize your home. Here are a few fall house maintenance tips to check off your to-do list before the weather turns frightful.
Evaluate Your Roof
Your roof is your home’s last line of defense against the elements. Before the mercury plummets make sure the flashing around your chimney is in good shape and that there are no loose shingles. If you have skylights make sure the seals are secure so rain and melting snow won’t leak through.
Change Your Filters and Batteries
In winter, your heater will probably get a workout. Change your HVAC filters to cut down on dust and allergens. Also clean the filters in your stove vents and clothes dryer. At the same time, change the batteries in all of your smoke detectors. Candles, space heaters, Christmas lights, and popping fireplace embers increase the fire risk during fall and winter.
Check Your Fireplace
Speaking of your fireplace, fall is the ideal time to hire a chimney sweep to clear out debris so smoke will vent properly. Remove any leftover ashes in the fireplace and make sure your damper handle and flue are operating as intended. According to the National Fire Protection Association, the top cause of home heating fires is failing to clean solids-fueled heating equipment, especially chimneys.
Look for and Fix Drafts
If you want to stay comfortable in the colder months (and cut down on your heating bill), seal or caulk any drafts around doors and windows. If your windows are not energy efficient, consider hanging thick thermal curtains. When closed, they’ll block cold air from entering the room.
Fall signals the unofficial beginning of the holiday season. Before you become consumed with decking your halls, give us a call at Goodrich & Watson. We’ll evaluate your home insurance policy so you’ll have peace of mind that you are well protected.