The nights are drawing in, the leaves are falling and soon September’s record temperatures will be forgotten as we wrap up warm, turn the heating up and hunker down for the colder months.
Autumn-proof your home with these top tips:
1. Tend to your garden
Trim, protect and maintain your plants throughout the winter by clearing out any weeds and sow a 'cover crop' over your soil to make sure the layer underneath stays healthy.
2. Clean out the gutters
Fallen leaves can make your drainpipes more prone to blockages, meaning your pipes could overflow causing damp inside the house. Taking the small step of ridding them of any unwanted greenery will prove worthwhile.
3. Check your heating
It hasn’t been used for many months (hopefully) so turn the heating on now and literally 'warm it up'. Check each radiator is working properly and if not, try bleeding them.
4. Clear your shed
Hedgehogs are known to nest in warm places like garden sheds, so get rid of any hazards where they could get trapped.
5. Invest in a draught excluder
It's an all round winner. It helps insulate the home better, hopefully making you turn the heating on less. You can get them in weird and wonderful shapes too, which makes investing in one all the more fun.
6. Keep the spiders away
As it turns towards winter, spiders will be on the rise, so keep your house dust and clutter free, and spray peppermint essential oil around to both refresh your home and repel the critters.
7. Examine your roof
Missing, broken or loose tiles can result in leaks as the weather turns colder, which can turn into an unexpected DIY episode, so check them over.
8. Clean your fireplace and chimney
Remove any ashes and charred wood from the fireplace and make sure the chimney cap on the top of your chimney is secure so no bugs can crawl down.
9. Service your boiler
Haven't had your boiler serviced in a while? Now is the time! If it happens to break down in the winter, finding a serviceman to repair it will become mission impossible.
10. Reprogramme your thermostat
Set your heating thermostat to come on for an hour before you wake up and then turn off before you go out to ensure you're not spending a small fortune having it on all day, every day.
11. Check for gaps!
Make sure to check all windows and doors to see if there are any unsealed openings or broken hinges that could allow heat to escape and cold air to enter when it’s not wanted.
12. Insulate your loft
This could be as simple as a DIY job if you do not have damp problems or a flat roof, but regardless, loft insulation is a proven effective way to reduce heat loss and cut down your heating bills.
13. Move any garden favourites inside
Do you have a beloved statue or favourite garden plant? Bring it inside to stop it receiving a frost attack, or at the very least cover them over for the winter months.