Getting Your Home Ready for Fall: Tips to Protect Your Home for the Cold Season

Friday, September 30, 2022


Photo by Harmen Jelle van Mourik on Unsplash

Keeping your home safe and secure throughout the year is an ongoing challenge. In addition to the usual checklist of maintenance tasks, there are a few special tasks you should take care of before autumn sets in. Luckily, these preparations take little time or effort but will pay off come chilly weather. Follow these tips to ensure your home stays cozy through the winter months.

Change your furnace filter

A clogged filter acts like a sponge, making your furnace work harder, and costing you more in energy bills. Change your filter when it looks like it needs it, or at least once a month—more if your home is dusty. If you notice that the airflow from your vents is reduced, change your filter. It's well worth the investment in your energy bills and comfort. You can check your filter to see if it needs to be changed by lifting it up and looking at it to see if it is dirty. If it is dirty, then you will need to change it. A dirty filter can cause your furnace to work harder and use more energy, which will cost you more in energy bills.

Clean-up in the kitchen

Autumn is the ideal time to get your kitchen spic and span. But don't just think of the countertops and floors; your appliances, too, need occasional cleaning. (While you're at it, check the water filters in your fridge and dishwasher.) Accumulated dust and grease can be a fire hazard, so take time to wipe down the range hood and refrigerator. Clean the oven regularly—it's probably the dirtiest appliance in your home. To get rid of grease, mix two tablespoons of baking soda with two cups (500 ml) of water in a bowl. Put the mixture in the oven on the cleaning setting, which will spit the grease out. If you have gas burners, turn off the pilot lights while you're cleaning. If they ignite while you're cleaning, they'll be a fire hazard. At the very least, they'll emit a terrible odor. It's a good idea to clean the pilot lights occasionally, even when you're not cleaning your oven.

Check and service your heating system

Make sure your heating system is in tip-top condition for the cold months ahead by having a professional come and do a thorough inspection. Have the system serviced if it needs it, or have it replaced if it's old or inefficient. A breakdown during the coldest part of the year can be dangerous, and you don't want to risk your family's safety. This is a preventative measure. If you home is already showing signs of an ineffective heating system, now may be the time to swallow your pride, and call in the likes of mold remediation experts, or your boiler man. Don’t put off, get it done as soon as you get a whiff that something’s wrong - it will save you time and a lot of money in the long run.

Lock up before you leave

Before you leave town, make sure you unlock all the doors and windows. If you're in a situation where you need to lock everything up, there are devices like DoorMan that automatically do it for you. If there's a chance of a power outage, make sure you have a battery-operated radio and some flashlights, and keep a charged cellphone on hand. Have fresh water on hand, too, in case of a power outage strands you without running water. When leaving town, make sure to lock up and take out any trash that may attract animals or pests. You can also take some steps to ensure that the wildlife around your home is safe and sound. You can do this by putting out bird feeders and seeds for squirrels, rabbits, and other animals in your area. You can also ensure that you have easy access to water for animals by having a bowl outside for them to drink from.

Turn on the furnace and check your ductwork

One of the first things to do when the temperature drops is turn on your furnace. Make sure that the airflow is working properly by checking your ductwork. You might be tempted to buy a new furnace if your home is old. But before you go that route, ensure the ductwork is in good shape. If you put in a new furnace and don't fix the ductwork, your new furnace will work just as hard as the old one.


Autumn is a great time to prepare your home for the cold winter months ahead. From cleaning your appliances to checking your furnace and ductwork, there are many tasks you can do to make sure your home is ready for the colder weather. These preparations take little time or effort but will pay off come chilly weather.

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