Charlotte homes do not suffer the same degree of exposure in the winter months as their northern brethren but the absence of great mounds of snow does not eliminate the need to winterize the southern home. The following are some preventive measures that will increase the safety of both the structure and the people who live inside of it.
Health and safety are not terms normally associated with gutters. While ice will rarely form here in Charlotte during winter, there are still risks in having cluttered gutters. A blocked drainage path causes accumulations of water in the crevices in the roof. This is a rampant breeding ground for fungus and molds. Many infections can be prevented by performing a seasonal cleaning of the gutters.
An additional safety device that should be inspected are carbon monoxide and smoke detectors. With the potential for cooler weather around the corner, the once dormant heating systems will come back to life. Usage will put a greater onus on thee detectors. Battery changes and cycle tests are straight forward methods to increase family safety.
Autumn is a wonderful time of year to spruce up the outer appearance of the home. A fresh coat of paint accomplishes many things. Outer surfaces receive an adequate seal from the weather. A hidden benefit can occur if the residence is for sale. The first thing prospective purchasers see upon arriving is the exterior. A well painted home will aid in retaining the asking price.
Proper air movement for a house is a science unto itself. Inadequate flow within the confines of the structure will result in the loss of efficiency for the heating and cooling systems. The pathway in which the air travels is the ductwork. The fall season is the ideal time to call a trained professional to test the integrity of the ducts. Leaks can cause a substantial portion of the air to escape before arriving at its intended destinations. The furnace and air conditioners have to work longer which cause utility bills to skyrocket each month.
Drafts cause the home to have an increased exposure to the elements. Windows and doors are notorious for developing leaks a they age. A simple visual inspection of the weather stripping or caulk around the window is prudent for cost savings. Feeling for a draft underneath the door is forward thinking as well. Many decorative door stoppers can be made or found at craft fairs.
Sometimes even the best of preventative measures can not completely eliminate drafts. The time to purchase and install new doors or windows is in the fall. The household does not have to wait long before reaping the potential tax write offs. The resale value of the home can also increase with this cost saving investment.
Finally when all that can be done is done by the homeowner, it is time to call in the big guns for one last inspection. Trained professionals are adapt in spotting issues that the home owner or this list may have overlooked. A chimney sweep can quickly determine the integrity of the structure. HVAC technicians can visually inspect all of the key components of the heating system. At the same time, they can make recommendations or assist in the transition to inactivity that an air conditioner requires for winter shutdown. These appliances will have longer lifetimes when inspected each and every fall.
With a small amount of preventative maintenance and forethought, the safety and efficiency of the home are increased. Fall is the ideal time to perform the aforementioned suggestions. Consulting with a trained professional will ease the homes transition to the winter months.