As we move into the month of November, we start experiencing less sunlight, colder temperatures, and shorter days here in Atlanta, which makes it an opportune time to do some preventative maintenance around your home. Practicing preventive care can save thousands of dollars in repairs come later this winter. Prepare for the colder weather and get those last-minute maintenance items crossed off your homeowner to-do list.
On November 3, we will set our clocks back an hour. At this time, you should also change the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. It’s also a good idea to vacuum out the smoke detectors when you change the batteries so that they stay clean and operate at peak efficiency.
You should also make sure your home is well insulated for winter. On a windy day, feel around the edges of doors, windows and fireplaces for any air leaks. Look for dust piles as clues to leaks. Caulk any leaks that you find to prevent cold air or water from leaking into your home. This will help your home be more energy efficient.
Inspect wood stoves and fireplace inserts. Hire a certified chimney sweeper to clean the chimney, if needed. If your chimney appears to be blocked or clogged it is important to call in a professional before use. Fire is one of the common dangers of a blocked chimney. This is because creosote is highly flammable and can burn slowly giving you no indication of what is going on.
It is also important to check your sump pump. Some unfinished basements in wet areas have sump pumps installed. These pumps switch on automatically when groundwater levels rise, eliminating basement water before it becomes a problem. If you have one, make sure it is in good working order before the rainy season starts.
As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to do preventative maintenance in and around your home throughout the year. Failure to do so can cost you thousands in repairs, and put you and your family at risk. If your routine maintenance uncovers larger issues including a faulty sump pump, or a leaking faucet, for example, seek professional help to make the repair.
We are Atlanta’s premier water and fire restoration experts specializing in water damage, water restoration, water extraction, fire damage, smoke damage, mold remediation and more. Serving metro Atlanta and surrounding cities since 1998. For more home improvement and safety tips follow us on Twitter: @premierdrying, Facebook or Google+.