Thursday, September 26, 2013

Autumn Maintenance Checklist

'Tis the season for a little outdoor maintenance! You could put it off or pretend it isn't important, but that might come back to bite you. So, since it shouldn't be avoided, we're hoping to make your life a little easier with a quick list of the must-do tasks. We've covered outdoor chores this week, but check back again soon for a short list of important indoor jobs as well!

The Lawn:
- Trim trees & bushes
- Fertilize the lawn
- Clean & store yard equipment
Make sure you trim branches back so they don't pose as a risk to power lines during winter storms.  If you're worried about trimming large branches check with the city or local government. It may actually be their responsibility to do major trimming in some situations. Also, take a little time and rip out the dead annuals from your flower beds and you'll save yourself the hassle next spring.

The House:
- Clean & repair gutters
- Inspect your roof
- Clean the chimney & fireplace
- Inspect & clean outdoor lights
- Check for peeling paint
- Seal cracks & gaps with caulk or weather stripping
Cracked or falling siding, a leaky roof, or full gutters are a recipe for disaster when mixed with harsh winter conditions. Take your time checking windows, doors, and your foundation for gaps. These few tasks may help to prevent serious (and costly) problems that can have a long term impact on your house.

Miscellaneous:
- Store things like paint, caulk, and adhesives somewhere they won't freeze
- Seal driveway
- Clean & cover your air conditioning unit
- Prep your deck & store outdoor furniture
- Unhook hoses and prep pipes for freezing weather
These final few tasks may not apply to every house, but shouldn't be overlooked if they're relevant to you. Continual freezing and thawing, which we can say with complete certainty will happen (this is Michigan after all), can wreak havoc on a cracked driveway, your wooden deck, and liquids left out in the cold. Stop and consider how your outdoor assets will hold up in the weather.

Finally, take a moment to jump in a leaf pile and enjoy another gorgeous Michigan Autumn!

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