MARCI LAEHR TENUTA of the Journal Times wrote the following article, including Mr. Handyman franchisee Greg Kruchko as an expert on home maintainence and repairs:
What feels better than freshening up the house after a long winter stuck inside? Except maybe, to do a thorough house cleaning before that cold season spent indoors.
There's plenty of household tasks that it just makes sense to tackle in a fall, including some regular maintenance jobs.
If you're going to spend the majority of time over the next seven months inside, why not make it a comfortable, energy-efficient and organized one?
Local cleaning and home maintenance experts say there is plenty to do around the house in the fall.
Any deep cleaning you didn't get to this spring should probably be done this fall, said Chris Miller of Household Help Inc.
She suggests doing tasks such as:
- Turning over your mattress and washing all of your bedding, including comforters and blankets.
- Getting your carpets professionally cleaned. Think of all the sand and grass clippings that have been walked in on your flip-flops this summer.
- Cleaning your windows, inside and out, including in between the sills. Miller said many new windows have UV filters and aren't supposed to be cleaned with glass cleaners. Instead, she suggests buying some microfiber towels. She gets them at the dollar store. "Take a microfiber cloth and get it damp with warm water," Miller said. "Wipe the window, then use a dry microfiber cloth to dry it. That's the way I clean all my windows.
- Cleaning your house from top to bottom, focusing on public rooms such as the living room, family room, entryway and guest bath.
- Get out the vacuum. Vacuum the drapes, window treatments, baseboards and in the corners. Move furniture and vacuum beneath and behind it. Vacuum upholstered furniture, or have professionally cleaned if needed. Pull the refrigerator away from the wall, and vacuum the condenser coils. For bottom-mounted coils, use a long, narrow brush to clean coils of dust and debris.
- Examining your chimney for any damage, Kruchko suggests.
- Covering up your air conditioning unit to protect it from ice and snow.
- Putting away summer equipment, such as outdoor tables and chairs, umbrellas, grills and children's toys.
- Touching up paint on and decks, trim and railings, says organizedhome.com . Use a wire brush to remove flaking paint; prime bare wood first.
- Draining and storing garden hoses, the site recommends. Install insulating covers on exterior spigots and have sprinkler systems blown free of water.
- Inspecting washing machine hoses for bulges, cracks or splits. Replace them every other year.
- Checking the dryer exhaust tube and vent for built-up lint, debris or birds' nests. Make sure the exterior vent door closes tightly when not in use.
- Installing ceiling fans, which Kruchko said might sound like a strange autumn task. However, he said with the fan blades tipped to push warm air down, homeowners can help save on heating bills and make themselves more comfortable.
- Using a hot water heater blanket.
- Insulating and wrapping pipes.
- Checking the attic insulation and adding more if necessary.
- Replacing windows, which, if you can afford it now, can really help save with energy costs, Kruchko said.
- Have an energy audit done, which will tell you where heat is escaping your home and costing you money.