Our Favorite Fall Reminders!
Fall is, of course, the time to make sure your home is ready for the change of seasons and the coming of winter. It’s also the time that many of us look forward to the traditional holiday season, and making sure our homes are safe and comfortable before company arrives, is near the tops of many of our to-do lists.
To help you comfortably navigate the shift from outdoor, warm-weather activities to cooler days, our team at Save Home Heat Company would like to offer the following list of some of the more common and crucial fall seasonal reminders for you to keep in mind as outdoor temperatures start dropping. Please feel free to re-prioritize some of these items, but we urge you to keep all safety-related points at the top of your list.
Checklist: ‘Priority-Level One’
- Safety is always a priority, and one of the first things we recommend doing is replacing the batteries on all your carbon monoxide and smoke alarms. This should be done yearly. Replace any burnt-out outdoor lightbulbs, as well, to ensure optimal safety outside around your home at night, especially during icy and snowy conditions.
- Make sure your home’s heating system is ready to run when you need it. Check your furnace filter to see if it needs to be replaced or cleaned (depending on the filter). Switch your thermostat setting (plural, if you have hot water heat) to ‘Heat,’ with the fan setting on ‘Auto.’ If you have a central humidifier and ran central AC during the summer, turn the humidifier back on (usually by a switch near the furnace or a wall control near or part of your thermostat). If you aren’t sure how to do this, call your trusted heating professional for advice before the thermostat calls for heat. In the Denver-Boulder Metro area, that would be Save Home Heat Company!
- Be sure annual maintenance for your furnace or boiler has been performed in the past 12 months. Our team recommends that our customers make the move to an annual maintenance agreement, with discounted annual service performed after the first rush of emergency no-heat calls, when one of our skilled technicians can provide your heating system with the most focused, detailed attention possible – without a bunch of emergency calls looming over his or her shoulder. Our annual maintenance agreements also include special discounts on repairs and equipment replacements or upgrades, plus separate, thorough annual assessments of your plumbing and electrical systems by one of our specialists from each of those departments.
- If your home as an evaporative cooling system (aka. ‘swamp cooler’), the unit and the water line should be drained and setup for winter before freezing conditions arrive. In many cases, this also involves installing the canvas cover that many homeowners use to extend the life of their units. Save Home Heat Company offers annual maintenance agreements for Denver-Boulder area homeowners who would like us to handle starting up and shutting down the system, each year.
- If you heat by wood, remember to perform or schedule annual sweeping of your flue pipe. In some cases, once a year might not be enough. Consult your fireplace professional (not us!) to be sure your system is safe.
Checklist: ‘Level Two’
- Make sure that your automated sprinkler system has been professionally drained and winterized (SHH does not provide this service). Disconnect and store any manual garden hoses that you’ve been using during the summer, and inspect all spigots for leaks before forgetting about them for five months. In the Denver-Boulder area, if you need a professional plumber to assist with any outdoor spigot leaks.
- Keeping in mind all the leaves that fly in the fall, make sure your roof’s gutters and downspouts are clear of debris and are draining properly. Consult a gutter specialist (not us!) for advice on maintaining and keeping your gutters clear of leaves and other flying objects that can potentially wreck havoc with your roof, if neglected. Always remember: Safety First! Do not attempt clearing gutters or working on your roof without professional assistance.
- Check any heat tape that’s installed on plumbing pipes under or around your house, and make sure they’re plugged in and working properly. If you can easily see the heat tape, perform a visual inspection to see if there is anything you think might need to be looked at more closely by a service pro. When in doubt, pick up the phone and make the call.
- Perform visual inspection (hands off!) of all outdoor and indoor electrical outlets, plumbing, drains, and gas piping. If something loose or makes you nervous, call your local pro for advice, and don’t attempt repairs that you may not be qualified to perform.
- Before guests start arriving for holiday festivities, consider child-proofing any easily accessible electrical outlets with plastic safety inserts or covers that can found at your local hardware store.
Fall Checklist Overview
- Safety First in All Things!
- When In Doubt, Contact a Professional
- Look (But Don’t Touch!) For Warning Signs of Issues That Could Develop
- Annual Inspections, Indoors and Outdoors, Could Enhance Safety & Save You Money
- Annual Inspection & Maintenance of Your Heating System Is Crucial
- Be Careful About Getting Into Projects Over Your Head, Even With The Best Of Intentions
- Enjoy and treasure time at home with your friends and loved ones
- Don’t Forget To Make A Checklist of Annual Fall Reminders!
Checklist Finale: Don’t Forget These Important Items!
- As for your valuable perennial plants and flowerbeds go, now is the time to fertilize. The root systems of most perennial plants love getting fed right before the frost arrives. If you have any questions about ‘what’ and ‘how,’ your local plant nursery is a great resource.
- Now is also a great time to check all the doors and windows in your home for gaps or air leakage, so you can address any caulking or weather-stripping needs before the temperatures get too cold for certain products to be used properly. Consult your local hardware or home improvement store for more information and direction of the best products for your needs.
- If you’ll be doing a lot of holiday cooking and entertaining, make sure your garbage disposal is working properly. If you have any questions, be sure and consult the manufacturer-provided owner’s manual or your local plumbing professionals such as Save Home Heat Company’s plumbing department. Safety first!
Denver-Boulder’s Trusted Home Services Team
With the right preparation, you can make the shift from summer into autumn and the holidays with ease and anticipation. We hope the above checklist of our favorite fall reminders helps make your list more complete before outdoor temperatures start to drop. In the Denver-Boulder area, please contact Save Home Heat Company for reliable, professional assistance with any of your home heating and cooling, electrical, plumbing, and indoor air quality needs.