Living in Florida we are fortunate to have long, drawn out summers followed by slightly cooler falls and very mild winters. Even though our winters are mild, there are still a few important steps you should take this fall to ensure your Florida home is ready for the change in temperature.
- Gutter time
Between summer showers and Hurricane season, it’s safe to say that Florida gets its fair share of rain over the summer and early fall. Rain can cause havoc on gutters, so do yourself a favor and break out the ladder to see how those gutters survived the downpours. Blocked gutters can result in a headache if they are too clogged for water to properly drain and may drain in to your windows or through your roof, resulting in some unpleasant and completely avoidable water damage. Additionally, gutters loaded with wet leaves and other debris can pull the gutters down, leaving your siding vulnerable to rot. Take the easy steps to prevent this and do a quick and easy gutter check. If your gutters are in need of some TLC, Bob Vila recommends using gloves, a mask, safety goggles and a ladder to scoop the leaves into a garbage bag then rinse with a high-pressure nozzle.
2. Fire Prevention
With winter and fall comes extra time in the kitchen cooking for Thanksgiving and baking Christmas sweets with loved ones. Take a moment now and ensure that your smoke detectors are up to the job. Test and replace the batteries so that you have the peace of mind knowing that if a kitchen mishap does happen, you and your guests will be alerted right away. Also, be sure to keep your fire extinguisher in the same place and regularly check its expiration date- a fire is not the time to realize you don’t know where the extinguisher is.
3. Check for Drafts
During the summer months, caulking is more likely to dry out due to the heat, especially here in Florida with the abundance of sun. Take some time this fall to check your windows and doors for air drafts caused by dried up or morphed caulking. According to energy.gov, a good way to check the caulking of a door is to shut the door on a dollar bill. If you can pull it out with ease, you are losing energy. If you do need to replace your caulking, remember that not all caulk is the same. Use this chart from energy.gov to determine what type of caulk will get the job done. Re-caulking your doors and windows won’t take you much time, but you are sure to see the benefits on your energy bill.