Your investment requires seasonal maintenance to ensure it continues to run smoothly. Fall is the time to make sure everything is in working order as we head into Winter, one of the hardest times of year on your home. Here are a few tips from the experts on our Customer Care team that will help lower your utility bills and protect your biggest investment. Download our Fall Maintenance Checklist and never miss a step again.
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- Check garage door tracks and lubricate bearings – Lubricate all hinges, rollers and the lock mechanism on the door: Spray lubricant into the keyhole and work the key several times to distribute it evenly. Proper maintenance of garage doors includes inspecting all the hardware and moving parts garage-door springs, cables, rollers and other door hardware. Look for signs of wear or broken parts. If you find any signs of damage, be sure to make repairs before the door is used again.
- Check caulking for air and water leaks.
- Test smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors (should be done monthly) – Just like any electrical appliance, the components of smoke alarms wear out over time. When a smoke alarm reaches 10 years of use, the potential of failing to detect a fire increases substantially. Replacing them after 10 years reduces the likelihood of failure. Every smoke alarm comes with a test button. It is recommended that people test their alarms regularly, at least once a month. Periodic cleaning is very important. Smoke alarms have small screens around the sensing chamber to keep small bugs and dust particles out. But dust can accumulate on the screen and slow air movement through it. Cleaning is easy. Just vacuum around the outside of the smoke detector at least once a year.
- Check roof including shingles, vents and eavestroughs.
- Check weatherstripping on windows and doors – Windows can account for up to 25% of total house heat loss. Air leakage can be reduced by applying a continuous bead of caulking around window trim and between the trim and the frame. Weather stripping is used to prevent air leakage at parts of an operable window that move. In most cases, it is a simple task to replace worn weather stripping around doors and windows, when required this will save you money on heating costs.
- Drain and clean humidifier – Humidifiers are enormously beneficial for the air quality in your home and can prevent the dryness association with a Canadian winter. However, they do require a bit of maintenance, which should not be overlooked. Dirty reservoirs and filters in humidifiers can quickly breed bacteria, mould and can be especially problematic for people with asthma and allergies. Check out our guide to Humidifier Care for more information.
- Winterize lawn and remove leaves. (Learn More Here)
- Shut off the exterior water supply.
- Drain exterior water lines – Shut off the hose bibs on the interior, remove hoses and protect exposed water pipes to prevent them from freezing. Before the first winter chill comes, make sure you take the necessary steps to ensure that outdoor pipes and faucets don’t freeze and burst. Another tip is to wrap exposed piping with a weather-resistant, insulating material made to keep them from freezing.
- Clean and replace furnace filter – Regular maintenance of your home heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC) is critical to ensure its long life and efficient operation. Proper maintenance of this system can help save you money. The air filter keeps pollution and debris out of your HVAC system, ensuring proper and efficient operation. A dirty filter will slow down the air flow, making both the furnace work harder to heat your home and your AC work harder to cool it. This wastes energy and can result in higher energy bills. Depending on the type of filter you are using it should be changed every 1-3 months.
Still Have Questions? View our other Home Maintenance Tips.