Photo via Pixabay
Lazy summer days and vacation adventures have given way to hectic school schedules and regular work weeks. But it’s still nice enough outside to tackle a few end-of-season chores before settling in to enjoy crisp temperatures and cozy evenings by the fire. Here are some tips to help homeowners close out the summer in style.
Consider a Few Fall Projects
The weather allows some fortunate fall lovers to give their air conditioners and furnaces a rest this time of year. If that’s the case, it could also be a good time to open the windows and tackle an indoor painting project, according to Zillow. The fresh air will help any new coats of paint dry faster and keep the room well ventilated while you paint.
And, since working windows are essential to enjoying those fall breezes, take the time to give them a good once-over. Clean them inside and out and replace or repair any damaged screens. Finally, make sure all window locks are functioning as they should.
Pamper patio furniture by cleaning it thoroughly before putting it into hibernation. Follow care instructions for cleaning fabric-covered cushions and make sure they’re completely dry before covering or storing them. Wipe and hose down any furniture that can stand up to a soaking, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions to clean and shut down your grill if you don’t plan to fire it up for a few months.
Take the time to clean your gutters, or have them cleaned by a professional. If too much debris collects in your gutters, this can lead to water collecting and eventually damage to your home’s foundation.
Lastly clean up and oil your yard and gardening tools so they are ready to go once the weather turns nicer. Don’t forget to disconnect any garden hoses and drain them of water before putting them away. It also helps to cover your spigots if you live in a party of the country that sees rough winters.
Keep Your Pool in Perfect Shape
Homeowners lucky enough to own a pool have a few extra chores when temperatures turn cooler. By following these basic guidelines and sticking to specifics for your swimming spot’s finish and filter type, you’ll help get the pool parties in session come spring.
About a week before shutting things down for the season, add a phosphate remover to help keep algae from invading. When you’re ready to complete the shutdown process, give the pool a thorough brushing and vacuuming to make reopening easier. Next, adjust the water level according to the pool’s finish type and whether you expect the water to freeze over the winter.
Once the water level is set, use a pool test kit to measure pH, alkalinity, and other conditions, making adjustments if needed. Shock and chlorinate your pool to kill off any lingering bacteria and run the pool pump for a full cycle before cleaning your filter with water and soaking it in filter cleaner. The cleaning process for sand filters also calls for the additional step of backwashing, so be sure to review requirements for your specific filter.
After the filter is clean, drain the pool lines. If you live in a very cold climate, you may want to add an antifreeze specifically designed for pool maintenance to the pipes. This keeps any residual water from from damaging them during extreme weather. Finally, inflate and install an air pillow at the center of the pool and put the pool — and the project — to bed by installing a safety cover, winter cover, or leaf net.
Following these fall maintenance tips will help you weather the coming winter. Proper preparation will also reduce your workload once warmer weather returns, giving you more time to stop and smell the roses — or at least plant a few flowers — come spring.
Special thanks to Paul Denikin of DadKnowsDIY.com for sharing these insightful tips on preparing for winter. Visit his sight for more around the home DIY tips and advice.