The only fall home maintenance checklist you’ll need
It’s that time of year again. Kids are going back to school, the leaves are changing to beautiful hues of orange and red, and you have another list of things to do. We want you to feel proud of your home, and one way to do that is through proper maintenance. We’ve created a handy checklist to help you through the next couple of months.
If you prefer, you can download a printable version of this checklist from our website.
Fall Yard and Home Maintenance Checklist
Tidy up your veggie garden
Pull out plants that have served their purpose and toss them into the compost bin. If you need to repair your above-ground planters, this is a good time to do that task.
Apply mulch to garden beds
Are you mulching over the winter? Don’t forget to put a layer of your preferred mulch after you’ve pulled out any weeds and dead plants. This is also a good time to put on a layer of compost.
Plant your fall bulbs, like tulips
Fall bulbs such as tulips or fall plantings of vegetables like garlic usually go into the ground around September/October. Check the recommendations for your area and mark on the calendar when it is time to plant.
Prune your trees
Is your maple tree creeping a little too close to the power lines? Prune hard-to-reach and dead branches and trim back the shrubs before they flower in the spring.
Tidy up yard debris
Take down the pool, clear the leaves and dead plants out of your flower beds, and anything else lingering in your yard that shouldn’t hibernate over the winter.
Clean out the gutters and rinse with the hose to make sure they are working properly before that first major storm hits.
Inspect the roof and repair shingles
Walk around your home and look up at the roof. Does anything look “off”? If you have an older roof, consider inspecting your roof for repairs. Hire a professional to stay on the safe side.
Change filters on your furnace or schedule a technician for your heating system
To keep your home safe and warm, make sure your heating system’s maintenance is up to par. If you use an oil furnace, call ahead to fill it up. Chances are, the first cold snap will have the oil delivery companies busy so be prepared ahead of time.
Clean the chimney and fireplace
Do you use a wood-burning fireplace? Have it properly cleaned before your first fire of the season. If you were not able to grab a load of firewood earlier in the spring to dry out, seek out a source so you’re well prepared.
Drain and disconnect hoses
Drain and disconnect your exterior hoses. This will prevent them from expanding when frozen, which causes them to burst. To maintain the quality of your hose, disconnect it and bring it indoors for the winter.
Rake those leaves
Rake your leaves, throw them in the compost, or bag them up for disposal. Don’t forget to jump in the pile!
Change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
With the cooler weather, you might be more likely to use your oven and fireplace. Once a year is a good time to make sure your safety detectors are in working order.
Clean and store outdoor furniture
Give your outdoor furniture a good scrub, then properly store it in a shed or crawlspace to protect it from the elements. If you have linens such as throw pillows or an outdoor rug, wash them before you put them away.
Clean and store outdoor decorative items that may be damaged during a freeze
Fragile lawn decorations, wind chimes, and anything else that is prone to cracking after a freeze should be cleaned and brought indoors.
Drain irrigation system
If you have an irrigation system for your garden, you will want to disconnect and drain it before freezing temperatures.
Inspect your home’s exterior for cracks
Walk around your home for a visual inspection for any cracks or issues that you may want to get checked out by a professional.
Make sure your sump pump still works
If you’re in an area that is prone to heavy rainfall, having a functional sump pump is critical during an emergency. Don’t wait until your basement is flooded before you realize your sump pump doesn’t work.
Clean your dryer vents
Some households tend to use their clothes dryer more frequently in the fall/winter than in the spring/summer because they are relying less on an outdoor clothesline. Lint buildup can potentially cause fires, so make sure your main vent is clean in addition to cleaning the filter after each use.
Schedule HVAC maintenance
If you use a heat pump or other HVAC system, now is a good time to have it serviced.
Check to weatherstrip around doors and windows
As the seasons change, drafts and cooler air can enter your home. Check your windows and doors for weather-stripping repairs. Tip: BC Hydro may still be offering their free Energy Saving Kit
Check storage areas like crawl spaces and the attic for insulation and potential problems
Once a year, give these areas a thorough check for critters, invasive plant growth, leaks, and mold growth.
Stock up on winter supplies for deicing, snow removal, and emergency supplies
If you already have winter supplies like a snow shovel and deicing salt, ensure that you know exactly where they are so you aren’t hunting around in the cold at the last minute. This is also a good time to look over your emergency supplies in terms of food, first aid, candles, and other related items.
Clean outdoor lighting fixtures
Take a hot damp rag and wipe the coverings for your exterior lighting fixtures. Usually, these are found by the front/back doors and near the garage. This will help improve visibility during the upcoming foggy weather.
Drain fuel from lawn equipment, like lawnmowers
Drain and properly store the fuel from your lawn equipment that you won’t be touching for months to come. This will help maintain the device and keep harmful fumes at bay.
Clean and organize your pantry
Inside your home, take the time to clean and organize your pantry. Take inventory of what you have and make a list of what you think you’ll need over the next few months. Often, fall and winter storms can knock out the power or cause trees to block roads. You’ll want to make sure you have what you need in case this situation happens. Tip: Don’t limit yourself to your kitchen pantry, look over personal care supplies and medications.
Deep clean your oven
It isn’t the most glamorous household task, but it is an important one. Give your oven a deep clean before the cooler weather sets in. You’ll likely be using it more for pot roasts, casseroles, Thanksgiving dinner, and that occasional cupcake craving.
Grab your printable copy of our Fall checklist
We’ve created a shorter, printer-friendly version of the above checklist so you can hang it on your refrigerator or wall.
The staff at Ballard Fine Homes hopes you have a cozy, enjoyable Fall season with your friends and loved ones. As always, we are here for any questions you may have about renovating your home or starting the process for your own custom-built dream home.