The kids are back in school, days are shorter and Fall is officially here! Hopefully, you’ve had time to complete the easy-to-follow, exterior Fall Maintenance List from our previous blog. Because we know the inside of your home is just as important to prepare for the change in seasons, here is an easy-to-follow, interior fall home maintenance checklist.
1. HVAC Inspection – In order for your home to be comfortable and warm during the fall and winter months your HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning) system needs to be running properly and efficiently. It is important to have a licensed professional inspect your furnace annually to ensure that the burners and fan are working correctly. Furnace filters should be changed at this time and checked regularly, replacing or cleaning the filter when it is dirty. If your furnace has a reusable filter, thoroughly clean it and wait until it is completely dry before reinstalling it. If you have an electronic air cleaner you should clean the pre-filter and collection cells at least twice a year.
If you have an air humidifier on your furnace it is important to have it inspected and cleaned (if needed) prior to the heating season. Depending on what type of air humidification system you have on your furnace, it may be necessary to clean the unit regularly during the heating season (refer to your humidifier manual for cleaning instructions), so that air pollutants, bacteria and mold spores are not circulated throughout your home. Being diligent in keeping the air filters clean will not only improve the air quality of your home but could extend the life of your furnace, air conditioner, air cleaner, and heat pump. If you live in the Colorado Springs area, and need assistance with your HVAC maintenance, we recommend you contact Bruno’s Heating and Cooling at www.brunosheatingandcooling.com or at (719) 491-4328.
2. Fireplace Cleaning – Before using your gas fireplace, the interior compartment and logs should be cleaned and any film on the glass should be removed with glass cleaner. Inspect the external vent cap to ensure that debris is not interfering with air flow, as well as the entire venting system, to make sure it is functioning properly. Flame patterns and height should be checked visually and periodically for irregularities – flames should be steady, not lifting or floating, and the thermopile/thermocouple tips should be covered with flame. Inspecting and cleaning your fireplace should be done annually and we highly suggest you hire a qualified service technician to do so. If you choose to do this maintenance yourself make sure you TURN OFF THE GAS prior to inspection and cleaning and refer to your owner’s manual for instructions. For fireplace maintenance in the Colorado Springs, CO area we recommend contacting Western Fireplace at http://www.westernfireplace.com or at 719-591-0020. (Fireplace photo courtesy of Western Fireplace)
If you have a wood burning fireplace or stove, the Chimney Safety Institute of America, recommends hiring a professional chimney sweep annually to inspect the outside, and inside, condition of the fireplace, vents and chimney. This prevents carbon monoxide poisoning and/or unnecessary fire. You can find a list of CSIA certified chimney sweeps for your area here.
3. Prevent Cold Air Infiltration – Air leaks waste a lot of your energy dollars. Some of the least expensive, money saving tasks you can do is caulk, seal, and weather strip around all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside of your home. Use two-sided door snakes to keep drafts out and double check your windows to ensure they are closing and sealing properly. Hanging thermal lined draperies, or installing cellular shades, in your home can also cut down on heat loss and cold air infiltration. For a list of energy saving tips and instructions check out: http://energy.gov/energysaver/articles/tips-sealing-air-leaks.
Learn more about the two sided door snake here.
4. Inspect Smoke Alarms and Carbon Monoxide Detectors – According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), three out of five home fire deaths result from fires in properties without working smoke alarms; more than one-third (37 percent) of home fire deaths result from fires in which no smoke alarms are present, and the risk of dying in a home fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms. An average of 170 people perish in their homes each year from carbon monoxide (CO) We cannot emphasis enough the importance of inspecting all smoke alarms and CO detectors in your home to make sure they are working properly – this small measure saves lives! This is an ideal time to replace back-up batteries in hardwired units and plugged-in units. For smoke alarm and carbon-monoxide guidelines and maintenance instruction you can refer to the following links: http://www.cpsc.gov/en/Safety-Education/Safety-Education-Centers/Carbon-Monoxide-Information-Center/Carbon-Monoxide-Questions-and-Answers-/ or hire a local, licensed and insured, electrician to inspect and maintain your detectors.
5. Enjoy your warm and safe home this fall – Fall can be a wonderful time for connecting with friends and family. Be sure to make some time to enjoy them after the busy summer season. 🙂
We hope this Interior Fall Home Maintenance Check List has been helpful to you. If you need any further assistance, feel free to give us a call 719-494-0932. Let us know, in the comments below, how this list helped you! And be sure to LIKE us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more tips and resources for your home.
Solid Rock Custom Homes has been building and remodeling homes throughout beautiful, Colorado Springs, Colorado (El Paso, Teller and Douglas counties) since 1995. If we can assist you with any of your home building or remodeling needs please contact us at 719-494-0932, or at www.SolidRockCustomHomes.com.