Now that we’re in the middle of fall and approaching the beginning of winter, what can you as a homeowner do to prepare your house for these seasons?

Your first order of business should be to check your smoke detector batteries. Many new homes are either electrically-wired or have smoke detectors with the new 10-year batteries, but there are still plenty out there that only work with 9-volt batteries. I generally advise people to check them at the time changes, which is twice a year.

I also recommend checking and replacing your furnace filters at that same interval. This will help your furnace to be much more efficient by getting rid of the dust and animal dander that accumulates inside it. Now’s even a good time to turn your furnace on to exhaust that burnt dust smell that lingers around it after long periods of inactivity. This is especially important if you own a rental property, as this will save you from any inconvenient maintenance calls down the road.

“Don’t put off your maintenance chores any longer.”

We’ve all been through a power outage or two this time of year, so it’s a good time to locate your flashlights and put them in a place where everyone in the house will know where to find them. It also wouldn’t hurt to keep a couple candles in strategic locations. Make sure they’re safe candles and not the kind that can be easily knocked over.

Any and all maintenance items you planned on doing over the summer, whether it’s unblocking some drainage or sealing something that was allowing some moisture intrusion, should be done so that any accumulated moisture doesn’t do serious damage to your foundation. Here in Northern California, we’re pretty spoiled by having a dry summer, but it never hurts to be prepared.

If you have any other questions or have a topic in mind you’d like to see me discuss, feel free to reach out to me by phone or email. I look forward to talking with you soon!