The changing seasons bring new chores to complete around the home, spring cleaning, summer mowing, and shoveling snow in the winter. Most of those jobs are reactions to conditions, but there are some jobs you need to do ahead of the changing weather. As we shift from summer into fall, make plans to take care of these four important fall home maintenance tasks.

Fall Home Maintenance Begins with Leaf Raking

While your yard may look beautiful covered in a layer of bright orange or red, the wet leaves create a slick surface for foot traffic and it’s bad for your grass.

Most lawns continue to grow well past the date when leaves begin to fall. That means the grass still needs sunlight and oxygen. The more leaves you have on your lawn, the less of those resources your grass receives. Use a mulching mower to break down the leaves for nutrients, start a compost pile, or rake them up and dispose of them.

Preparing Your Heating & Cooling System

The most obvious change you experience each fall is a drop in temperature. The heat and humidity of summer fade into cooler temperatures. When that first cold snap hits, your HVAC needs to be ready so you and your family will be comfortable.

Have your heating and cooling system serviced in the fall. The technician will replace filters, clean the system, and inspect it to make sure it’s ready to switch over to heat. The cleaning may also eliminate some of the dust that creates that unpleasant odor when your heat first kicks on.

Check the Roofing During Fall Home Maintenance

Your roof may have lost a shingle or two during summer storms. You may not be experiencing leaks, but shingle loss is the first step in that direction. Summer rains run off quickly, but soggy leaves or a buildup of snow hold water in place. Water that collects in clogged gutters can seep through weakened and damaged areas of the roofing.

Winter is not the best season for roof repairs. That’s why your fall home maintenance plans should include a roof inspection. If you can safely access the roof, check for missing shingles, algae growth, and damaged areas. Look in the attic for signs of water intrusion like streaks on the wood, mold growth, and damp insulation. If you find any evidence of a leak, make repairs now.

Remove Window Screens

Once the temperatures drop and it’s too cold to open your windows, it’s time to put your screens away for the year. Leaving them in place all winter long exposes them to extreme temperatures, ice, and precipitation, shortening their lives and leading to added expense.

Carefully remove your screens. Clean the window sills and trim and then clean the screens themselves. Find a clean, dry area to store them. This will minimize damage during the winter months and the screens will be ready when warm weather returns.

Every change in the seasons brings some work for homeowners. When you take care of these fall home maintenance tasks, you’ll be better prepared for a pleasant winter.

Rambo Inspection Services provides home inspections for Chicagoland. If you’re buying or selling a home, contact us to book an appointment.