While everyone is out enjoying fall, homeowners will be planning their chores and end-of-the-year maintenance to make sure everything in their home is protected and working efficiently for fall and the upcoming winter.
When it comes to getting your home ready for fall and winter, here are seven of our best practice tips:
Tip # 1: Empty Your Septic Tank Before the Frost Sets In
Do you run off of a septic tank? Have you had it cleaned or emptied recently? It’s recommended to clean your septic tank about every three years. If your tank is due for a cleaning, we recommend having it done before the winter comes, so the ground is still soft. This will make the process easier, especially if the tank requires any extensive digging or repairs.
Tip # 2: Invest in Drain Cleaning Before the Holidays
Are you already planning your holiday cooking? Over the course of the year, debris such as food, oil, and grease builds up in your drains creating blockages. Don’t wait for the holidays to find out your drains are clogged. Invest in professional cleaning so you’ll go into the holiday hustle with sparkly clean pipes and after the excess cooking and meal prep of the holidays, you won’t be left with an overly clogged drain.
Tip # 3: Inspect Your Sump Pump
If you use your sump pump purely as a preventive measure, chances are, it’s seized. A seized sump pump will not work when you need it the most. The best way to check and see if the pump has seized is by pouring water in the tank and waiting to hear the pump turn on. If the pump doesn’t turn on, it has most likely seized and requires professional attention.
Tip # 4: Insulate Your Pipes and Seal Outdoor Cracks
Although the temperature in Austin never really gets as cold as our friends to the north, we do get a couple cold snaps in the winter that may contribute to a frozen pipe that will ultimately burst.
Play it safe by insulating your pipes with inexpensive pipe insulator. It can be purchased at any hardware store and simply slips over the pipes, protecting them from the cold. It’s also a good idea to seal any cracks that may expose your pipes to the outdoors. Even a crack less than an inch wide can let in enough cold air to do damage.
Tip # 5: Remove Outdoor Hoses and Disconnect Exterior Faucets
For the same reason you would insulate your pipes, remove your outdoor hoses and disconnect your outdoor faucets. For the hoses, storing them in a dry location will make sure you get lots of use out of them for years to come.
Tip # 6: Clean Your Gutters and Drainage Pipes
Winter and fall come with increased precipitation. This is why you should clean your gutters to make sure that there is a clear path for the precipitation to travel. Otherwise, you may risk water damage and other damage to your home if there is a blocked gutter.
Tip # 7: Schedule Water Heater Maintenance
Experiencing a water heater malfunction in the winter when all you want is a hot bath or shower is not fun. Make sure your water heater is working efficiently and reliably with professional water heater maintenance. We’ll look over your system and point out and repair any potential issues before they create an unexpected problem.