To keep your home running smoothly, you already know you need to maintain it, especially as the seasons change. But there’s another reason you need to do it, too — to prevent an emergency in your home that requires calling your insurance company.
Make sure you follow these fall home maintenance tips and avoid unnecessary home insurance claims this fall and winter.
Do Lawn Maintenance
A few quick things around your yard will keep everyone safer and prevent damage.
- Rake up leaves to prevent unsafe walking conditions
- Put away outdoor furniture to avoid damage from ice and snow
- Disconnect hoses and storm them away for the winter
- If you have skirting around your home, check for loose spots or holes. Make repairs to keep animals out and prevent damage from cold weather.
Clean Your Gutters
You know you need to keep your gutters clean. In the fall, as the leaves start clogging up the drains, it’s even more important. A clogged gutter can’t move water away from your home, allowing it to pool near the foundation which can cause damage over time. Any extra water could freeze and create major slipping hazards, too.
Check Your Roof
Before the cold weather arrives, inspect your roof. You’re looking for broken, cracked, loose, or missing shingles or tiles. Fix these immediately. The harsh wind, ice, snow, or rain from winter will further damage your roof and could cause leaks in your home. The last thing you want to do in dead of winter is try to repair your roof and deal with water damage.
Take Care of the Chimney and Fireplace
If you’ve got a fireplace, chances are good that you’ll use it over the winter. There are a few things you need to do to keep your home safe this winter.
- Have your fireplace and chimney cleaned to remove built-up creosote. It’s a byproduct of using your fireplace that can easily ignite.
- Keep the flue closed when you’re not using your fireplace.
- Install a fireplace screen in front of your fireplace, especially after you light a fire. This prevents sparks from igniting in your home.
- Move flammable items away from the fireplace.
- Check your smoke detectors and put in fresh batteries.
Check Your Heating Systems
Have your heating system serviced by an HVAC professional so that it’s in good working condition for the cold weather ahead. They’ll also be able to take care of small problems before they become big ones. Move all flammable objects away from your furnace and/or water heater to prevent a fire in winter.
Insulate Your Indoor Pipes
In winter, it’s not uncommon for pipes to freeze and burst causing flooding and potential mold in your homes. This fall, insulate your pipes to keep your home safer and dryer. You can buy insulation that fits around your pipes from most home improvement stores. If you can’t afford to do your entire home, focus on the pipes closest to the cold weather, such as those on outdoor-facing walls or any pipe that’s ever frozen in the past.
It’s not enough to take care of your home to prevent fall or winter insurance claims. You also need the right home insurance. Contact Charlotte Insurance today. We can review your current policy and give you estimates for new home insurance that will protect you all year long.