Come fall, making sure your home is ready for winter should be on the top of every Vancouver area homeowners to-do list. It’s not enough to simply use band-aid solutions as issues pop up.
We’ve created this fall & winter home maintenance guide so you can get ahead of the rain and cold weather and make sure your home stays warm and dry.
Yard and Outdoor Space Maintenance
While many people think their yard doesn’t need preparation before winter, it still needs to be prepared like anywhere else. Below, we’ve outlined steps to take before the first frost comes.
Trim Dead Branches
Trimming dead branches can stop serious damage to your home!
Dead branches are not as strong as ones that are alive. With enough rainfall (or in some cases, snow and ice), branches will become weighed down and fall. Make sure to trim any branches that look dead to avoid damage to your property.
Raking leaves will do more than just make your lawn look great. It will keep your lawn healthy!
Not only can a leafy lawn lead to pests and dead grass, it can keep new grass from growing back the next year. Just like us, your lawn needs to breathe in order to stay healthy!
Make sure to rake up any leaves on your lawn before it gets too wet or snowy.
Pruning will help keep your plants healthy! By helping your plants grow the way they should, you’ll prevent problems from popping up and help them look great
Pruning plants later in the fall once they have stopped growing for the year will give them a burst of energy and growth come spring!
While a properly functioning home exterior is the best protection for your home’s interior, you must also prepare the inside of your home for the coming winter.
Service Your Heater
For a safe and warm home, get your heater tuned-up and inspected before any serious cooler weather sets in. It doesn’t cost much and will ensure that you aren’t put in a situation where your heater is broken during sub-freezing temperatures. It’ll also lengthen the life of your furnace and heat pump.
Make sure to schedule an appointment early. The later you wait, the further back in line you’ll be to have any technicians come out to your home.
Replace Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detector Batteries
Not checking your carbon monoxide detectors and smoke detectors regularly could have life-threatening effects. Given that heaters could give out carbon monoxide, autumn is a great time to check your detectors. This is a great opportunity to check on the smoke detectors as well.
Unlike smoke, you can’t smell carbon monoxide. Without the detector, you will have no idea until it is too late.
Walk around your home and check all of your detectors to make sure they have batteries in them. All will have a test button that will let you know if they are operating properly.
Check Attic Ventilation
Make sure your attic ventilation is operating properly. Proper ventilation helps control temperatures and limit moisture, helping to prevent damage and lengthen the life of your roof.
Make sure to call a trusted attic ventilation repair specialist to make sure you are getting maximum ventilation for your attic. Doing so will keep your home and roof safe!
Your home’s exterior will be bearing the brunt of the harsh winter weather and will be acting as your shield to any harsh weather. Make sure it’s ready by taking care of these tasks.
Turn Off Outdoor Water and Store Hoses
Water left in exterior pipes and faucets can freeze and burst. Make sure to detach all hoses from outdoor faucets and store the hoses in your basement or garage.
Shut off the water source to the outside of your home and turn on the faucet to let the pipe drain completely.
Seal Cracks Around Doors and Windows
Sealing any cracks around doors and windows will keep cold air from getting into your home. It will also keep out moisture, which could lead to damage to mold or other damage to the inside of your home. Sealing up cracks will also help keep small critters and bugs out of your home!!
Clean Your Gutters
Besides pumpkins, flannel shirts, and football, almost nothing is as synonymous with fall as cleaning your gutters. And for good reason! Not cleaning your gutters can lead to damaged siding and roofs, and will destroy the gutters themselves. It could also cause an ice dam once temperatures dip below freezing.
While you’re cleaning them, look for any damage and replace or repair them before the winter rains come.
Winterizing Your Roof
Given the Portland area’s rainy and wet winters, making sure everything is okay with your roof should be a huge priority. Not doing so could leave your home wet and compound any existing damage.
Inspect Your Roof
Contact an experienced roof maintenance and cleaning specialist to come out and take a look at your roof. While some think giving your roof a once over by yourself will do, the average person simply does not have the ability to recognize every roof issue. For instance, there is no way to know if your roof truly needs new roof flashings without a certified roof maintenance expert taking a look.
Fortunately, a reputable roof cleaning company will offer a free inspection, so there is no risk in calling a roofing specialist for their expert opinion. It will be absolutely free!
Clean Your Roof
Mossy roofs are particularly important to clean, as moss can…
- Damage your shingles
- Cause mold and bacteria growth
- Create new leaks in your roof
A trusted roof cleaner will not only clear your roof of any existing moss, it will also treat your roof so the issue does not come back anytime soon.
Make Sure to Fix Any Leaks
A leak that seems small in summer or early fall will only get worse once the weather turns. Portland and Vancouver winters include rain, snow, and cold weather (and who knows what else!). The last thing you want is water rushing into your home late at night because you did not fix a leak early on.
Call a trusted roof maintenance company and see what they recommend for your leaky roof. Companies that specialize in cleaning and maintenance are the best to work with, as they will never try to sell you on a roof replacement you don’t need.
Don’t forget about taking care of any skylight issues as well. Poorly installed skylights are hotspots for leaks, and it’s imperative you get any issues with them taken care of before rain starts falling.
Get Your Roof Ready for Winter
As with anything to do with your home, hiring only a trusted and experienced roof cleaner will help ensure the longevity and integrity of your roof.
When you work with Northwest Roof Maintenance, you’ll know that you are only working with experienced and well-trained technicians that know how to treat your roof. We’ll come out and after giving your home a free inspection, only offer the services you actually need.
Give yourself a piece of mind heading into winter. Contact us online or call us today at 503-740-4808 (Portland) or (360) 910-8938 (Vancouver) for your free inspection.