As the days become shorter and the temperature drops, it is time for every homeowner to think about fall and winter maintenance. Getting these few maintenance steps out of the way well before the seasons change is a great way to keep a home running smoothly and avoid expensive repairs in the dead of winter.

Get the Fireplace Ready

Even those with a central heating system or space heater may use their fireplace throughout the winter, and this means that it must be thoroughly cleaned and inspected. This includes opening the damper to allow air to escape, cleaning out old ashes, testing the gas line if there is one, and having the chimney inspected and cleaned.

Drain and Clean the Hot Water Heater

Hot water is more important than ever during the winter and these appliances should be emptied and cleaned at least once a year. With the water heater off and cool, owners should drain the basin and check for any rust or sediment that will affect its efficiency.

Check for Drafts

Drafts around doors and windows are some of the worst offenders when it comes to mounting energy bills. Every door, window, and vent around the home should be checked and sealed up with caulking if any cracks have formed.


Insulation can sag and lose its effectiveness due to rodents, changing weather, and moisture in the air. Re-insulating an attic can often be carried out in as little as a few hours and will drastically improve the warmth of a home.

Clear Out Clogged Pipes

For those that are experiencing clogged drains, slow drains, or sewage smells throughout the home, fall is the time to clear out the sewer line. A local technician can often carry out this project in just a few hours and it will reduce the chance of a burst pipe when the weather drops below freezing. Clogged sewer lines can be a costly fix if not taken care of right away.

Check for Peeling Paint

Any wood or metal that is exposed to the elements should be inspected before the first rain or snow of the season. Applying a fresh layer of sealant or paint will improve the lifespan of these materials and prevent serious damage from outside moisture.

A little extra elbow grease and some forward planning could help you lower your energy bills and protect your home when the cold weather begins to move in. Creating a simple fall and winter checklist is the best way to keep a family happy, comfortable and safe throughout the fall and winter.

Informational credit to Kamloops Septic Service.