Fall is coming. Now is the time to start preparing the house in time for winter’s arrival. If you do this while the weather is still warm and dry, you won’t be outside in heavy clothing trying to stay warm enough. Here are the home care tasks that you should tackle before the snow falls.
Seal Cracks and Gaps
Walk around your parents’ foundation. You’re looking for any cracks or chips. Small cracks can be filled with a crack sealer. If there are large cracks, you may want to call in a contractor to make sure the foundation is okay. You also want to have exterior caulking to fill gaps around windows. Fill in any gaps to keep drafts out.
Clear the Gutters.
Get a hose and sprayer or pressure washer and clean out the gutters. On multi-level houses, you may need a ladder. If you are not comfortable working on a ladder, hire a person to clear the gutters of leaves, dead bugs, and pine needles.
If there are any leaks with the gutters, repair them. You don’t want gutters leaking and building up ice along the edge of the roof.
Now is a good time to put mulch over empty garden beds. Rake up leaves and pine needles and place them over the garden beds where weeds and plants have been removed. They will break down over the winter. If you still have leaves leftover, put them into a compost bin for next spring.
Test Out the Heating System.
Make sure the heating system is ready to go. If you haven’t had it cleaned yet, you need to do that. You don’t want a blocked pipe or leaking gas line to put your parents’ health at risk when the heat is turned on.
Add Extra Insulation.
If there are specific pipes in the basement that freeze each winter, get them wrapped up with insulation. It’s cheaper to buy the insulation than to pay a plumber for a frozen pipe. You can also add insulation to the attic and spaces where the house meets the foundation and allows cold air in.
When time is hard to come by, look at the benefits of hiring a home care agency to help out. Caregivers can take your mom and dad shopping, cook meals, and keep the house clean. They help with laundry and transportation.