Greasy doesn’t even begin to cover it when it comes to this major appliance. Your range hood funnels odors and smoke out of your home, and a dirty fan isn’t just unsightly—it’s dangerous. Wipe it down and ensure it’s functional to avoid fire hazards in the kitchen. Plus, a clean kitchen can help improve your home’s air quality.1
Pro tip: go easy on yourself by putting a bowl of water in the microwave and warming it for about a minute. The steam will make it easier to scrub off all those caked-on leftovers.
You may store cleaning products in here, but the cabinet under your sink may be anything but squeaky clean. Toss any expired products, old sponges or rags, and wipe down the area to prevent mold. We also recommend checking the pipes for any leaks or clogs while you’re there.
If your fridge has been sounding the alarm every time you open it, it’s probably time to give those hinges a little lubrication.
Got kids? Then you know the drill. It’s essential to keep outlets covered and safe from little fingers.
Chestnut roasting season may be a couple of months away, but it’s never too early to clean out the fireplace. If you have a fireplace in your home, find a professional chimney sweep service for cleaning and inspection. A clean hearth and fireplace can reduce fire hazards in your home and keep the air clean inside.
One look and you’ll understand that you should have done this months ago. Yuck. Give your blinds a good swipe, and you’ll be able to see clearly. At least for now.
Keep the cold out (and the heat in) by making sure your weather stripping hasn’t slipped out of place around windows and doors. Replace any worn caulking that leaves gaps, or you’ll find the wind whistling through more than you might like this season.
Look up and you’ll find you’ve neglected to clean much of your living space simply because it was out of sight. Give lights, fans, and vents a good dusting before you start circulating heat and spreading dust mites.
Did you know this was a thing? This is a thing. Once the weather starts to cool, change the direction your fan spins to circulate heat in winter. Refer to the manufacturer’s directions if you’re not sure how to do this on your model.
Don’t wait for fall and winter to check your heating system. Check with professionals in your area for an annual inspection between seasons. They’ll help you with any current cooling issues your home faces and help you prepare for the cold months to come.
You never know when disaster might strike, so make sure you’re prepared. Grab a 72-hour survival kit that contains everything you’d need in a pinch and keep it handy.
If you already have an emergency kit, check it for items that need to be replaced or are expired.
As the temperatures drop, say goodbye to pool supplies, beach towels, and flip-flops and hello to coats and boots and see if you can dig up a pair of mittens.
While uncovering your fall and winter gear, sort out the old and unused items to cut down on the clutter. Create “keep, donate, or trash” piles to stay organized.
Mildew, hard-water buildup, and age can deteriorate the caulking around your tub, so be ready to replace it to keep things looking fresh and safely sealed.
Accidents happen in and out of the bathroom. Add a grippy mat to your bathtub and replace that rug that slides everywhere to prevent falls in your bathroom.
If your home has stairs, dust off the handrail. It’s hard to make your grand entrance with dust all over your hands.
We recommend testing all your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors every month. Give them fresh batteries and don’t be afraid to replace them with newer, smarter models that can alert you to danger when you aren’t home.
Many plants, and especially trees, should be pruned in the fall—so tackle unruly branches and shape shrubs before the first frost.
This is your last chance to spot problems before the snow starts flying, so take a good look and fasten any loose shingles.
Before the leaves start shedding, dig up your trusty leaf blower and rake. If you have a lawnmower, conduct any seasonal maintenance before putting it away like removing the fuel and other components.
Clear the last of the debris from those gutters to make them ready for runoff from approaching storms. Clogged gutters in the winter can result in ice dams that’ll damage the exterior of your home.
Your hoses will last longer if you care for and store them properly along with your other garden tools. Just don’t forget to drain the water first. Or get a nice, icy cold surprise when you wind them up. Either way—your choice.
Walk around the perimeter of your home and give any unsightly spots a touch-up. It’ll be your last chance to put on a good face before the holidays.
Tip: If you’re afraid you’ll fail to get a handle on your fall tasks, schedule one per week on your calendar so September doesn’t get away from you.