It’s hard to believe that autumn is already here, and colorful leaves will soon take over the rolling hills of Charlottesville. While we transition into fall, let’s not forget about preparing our homes for the new season—as well as making way for winter.

To make your home as efficient and weatherproof as possible this season, consider the following autumn home maintenance tips:

Step 1: Check for Drafty, Inefficient Windows

One surefire way for your energy dollars to drain this autumn is from drafty windows. Aside from costing you money, they’ll also make your home uncomfortable. To locate the drafts, you’ll need to look at the condition of your windows. Check for problems such as:

  •    Loose joints
  •    Warped or cracked glass
  •    Damaged weatherstripping
  •    Rot around the frames or windowsill
  •    Faulty hardware
  •    Problems with opening and closing

If you discover that your windows are leaking air, you have several options. You can apply new caulking around the window trim, at the mitered joints of the trip, or between the trim and frame. Consider using silicone caulking since it’s waterproof. You can also replace the weatherstripping.

If the window has significant problems such as rotting frames or condensation between the window panes, new window installation might be your best option.

Step 2: Clean Gutters and Downspouts

Your gutters can easily clog during the fall season, which can quickly result in clogs and even foundational issues. Now is the time to be proactive and give your gutters a good cleaning.

When you get around to this project, start near the downspout. Focus on removing large debris such as twigs and leaves with a trowel and dump it in a bucket. You can also scoop it out by hand if you’re wearing thick work gloves.

For fine debris, flush it out with a garden hose starting at the top end of the downspout.

Step 3: Change Your Air Filter

It’s easy to forget about your air filter, but replacing will help keep your HVAC system in tip-top shape. According to Energy Star, check the air filter every month and change as needed—which is typically every three months. If the filter is dirty, it can become clogged and force the system to work in overdrive.

Step 4: Seal Easy Entry Points for Wildlife

This time of year, small animals are looking for places to live for winter. You’ll need to seal gaps where even the smallest animals can make their way inside. Remember, a mouse only needs a quarter-inch crack to make your home their own. Seal up spaces around windows, window air conditioning units, and keep clutter cleared out from your yard—including leaves and firewood.

Get Your Home Ready for Autumn with Window Depot USA

The goal is to keep your home weatherproof (and rodent proof) for the upcoming months. New exterior upgrades such as replacement windows and entry doors will create an airtight seal, keeping your home comfortable even during the coldest Charlottesville nights. Contact Window Depot USA of Charlottesville, Virginia to learn more.