It is hard to believe that daylight savings is almost over for another year. This time of year, when it's time to "fall back", always gets me thinking about what needs to be done to the outside of our home to get ready for the winter. Days get shorter and shorter, so there is less time to get done what needs to be done. Start now evaluating what projects are a "must do" this year. For many, it's just the simple moving things inside or into more protected areas, bringing in hoses and and protecting other "warm weather" items.
One of the tasks I really hated is cleaning out the gutters. Especially where I live, on a heavily forested lot. But I finally solved that problem a couple years ago by getting gutter protection installed; now they stay clean and free-flowing year round. Most window or siding companies in your area offer this very reasonable option. Once it's in place, the job is eliminated, so I highly recommend looking into gutter protection for your home. There are a lot of varieties, so do your homework to get the product that is right for you.
Being in the window and door business, I think another important task is checking the exterior of your home for any leaks or cracks that may have opened up since last fall. Check carefully around all vent pipes; seal up any openings in your building envelope as they say. If you find larger gaps, use expandable foam, for smaller areas a good grade of silicone caulk, either clear or color matched, is the right choice. Look especially closely at the perimeter of your windows and doors, and use a high-quality silicone to seal up any cracks that may have opened up. Just a 1/16" crack around a few windows or doors can equate to a hole the size of a cement block in your wall, which if left alone, will have a dramatic negative impact on your heating bills.
While you are out there, make sure your windows are fitting properly and well sealed. Make sure any putty missing is replaced and the paint is in good shape and covering any exposed wood. If the windows are starting to show excessive wear, it may be time to investigate replacing them with new state-of-the-art, highly energy-efficient, maintenance-free, vinyl replacement windows. Winter is on the way and there is no way to delay or stop it, so get out there as soon as you can to protect your home and your family.
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