Summer has ended, but there’s no need to fret: Fall brings with it crisp, cool days, wonderful colors — and football season!
It also brings with it a few maintenance tasks that Dukes-Moore Insurance recommends to help ensure your home is ready for fall and winter weather in Maryland.
Check out the following information for some general tips from the National Association of Home Builders, and don’t hesitate to call us if you have questions about what your home insurance policy covers.
- Gutters: Leaves, pine needles and other material can clog your gutters in the fall, preventing proper drainage and raising the risk of water damage to your walls, foundation, basement or landscaping. Remove all debris from your gutters and consider installing one of the many available gutter guard systems — it could be the last time you have to worry about clogged gutters.
- Trees: Weak trees and branches can break and cause damage to your home, car or even someone walking on your property (the latter is a good reason to consider a personal umbrella insurance policy). Watch out for large dead or detached branches, as well as cracks or rotten wood along trunks and major branches. If there are potential hazards, call a professional tree service.
- Roof: Damaged or loose shingles, as well as gaps where roofing or siding meets vents and flues, can mean emergency (and expensive) repairs later. Being proactive is the best way to avoid problems — if you see signs of damage, you’ll want to call a professional roofer.
- Walls: The exterior walls of your home keep the weather out — so you’ll want to make sure they’re up to the challenge of of a Maryland winter. Look for possible damage or decay on siding and trim, and patch or replace pieces if necessary.
- Insulation: Check the insulation in your attic, basement and crawl spaces, and insulate pipes in those spaces to protect against freezing.
- Pipes: Nobody wants to deal with a frozen pipe, so if you live in a place susceptible to freezing, wrap exposed ones with heating tape every winter and keep your home above 65 degrees. Always check for cracks and leaks. And know where the main water shut-off is in your home so you can act quickly if there is a problem.
- Heating: It’s a good idea to have your heating systems (furnace, fireplace, water heater, etc.) serviced every year.
For more information on home maintenance, visit the National Association of Home Builders website at www.nahb.com. A little action on your part now can make fall and winter a lot more enjoyable for you and your family.
For further questions and assistance, please contact our office.