Fall fell on us a month ago and it’s time to stop putting it off and get to those fall home maintenance chores. We just happen to have some information specific to Madison homeowners on what areas to focus on and where to find DIY tips or professional help.

Protect your family

When the weather chills we naturally turn to our fireplaces to help save money on heating bills. This is primarily why home fires occur more frequently during fall and winter. National Fire Protection Association studies show that 21 percent of deaths from home fires occurred because home occupants weren’t alerted by a smoke alarm. The moral of this story is to check your smoke alarm to ensure the batteries work and the unit is in operable condition. The American Red Cross suggests that you run a check every month during fall and winter.

Keep warm air in and cold air out

Did you know that if you can see daylight coming into the home through the door frame your weather stripping is shot? Replacing it is an easy and inexpensive fix and it will keep all that air you’re paying dearly to warm inside the home and the cold air from entering. Doing this one small chore can help you save from 10 to 15 percent on your heating bills during fall and winter.

Check the HVAC system

Fifteen to 20 years – that’s the average life span of a furnace. A heat pump lasts about 16 years. If you know that either in your home is approaching the end of its useful life, call in an HVAC professional to have them inspected.

Even newer systems should be inspected annually and, you know to routinely change the filter, right? In fact, while you’re out buying weather stripping, purchase enough filters to last through fall and winter.

Those nasty leaks

How efficient is your attic at helping to keep the heat inside the home? This is something many homeowners (especially new homeowners) don’t consider but the loss of heat through the attic can cause a whole host of issues – some with costly fixes. One of these is ice dams. As the warm air melts the snow on the roof, ice dams form. These may melt and the water will leak into the attic and may cause lasting damage to the roof. You do not want to replace your roof, trust us on this one.

Check to ensure there’s enough insulation in the attic by following the DIY guidelines at energystar.gov. While you’re up there, check for air leaks and ensure the attic is property ventilated.

One more place to look for leaks is in the basement. While you’re down there, wrap the pipes and ducts.



Posted by Jolenta Averill on
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