As you look forward to a mild South Florida winter, it is time to get your home ready for vacation season. As summer comes to an end, there are several things you can do to make your home vacation-ready when you reopen it. Simply refer to this handy checklist upon arrival in the Sunshine State.
List of External Items to Review
Start from the outside of your vacation property and move your way in:
Clear the Yard
Mow the grass on your sidewalk and yard.
Trim away any overgrown branches and shrubbery that a) looks scruffy, and b) could be used to scale your wall.
Remove any fallen leaves, branches, and other debris.
Make sure that your yard is safe for children and pets.
Test Your Outdoor Light Bulbs
Begin by testing all of your outdoor light bulbs. If any of them are burnt out or flickering, replace them right away.
Next, check all fuses and circuit breakers. If any of them appear to be burnt out or tripped, turn off the main power at the breaker box and then turn it back on again (this will reset some fuses). If that doesn’t work, then call an electrician to investigate further issues with your wiring system.
Check for Leaks
When reopening your second home, inspect the roof, windows, and doors for leaks. Look for mold, mildew, and water stains on the walls. Check for damage to the exterior of your home including siding, roofing materials and gutters.
If you find leaks anywhere, get them fixed right away because they will only get worse if left unattended over time.
Clean The Gutters
If you don’t want to do this yourself, hire a professional contractor or handyman—they can clean out leaves and debris that has collected while you have been away.
Attend to Your Pool
Make sure the water is clean and safe. The chlorine levels should be at 1 to 3 ppm (parts per million). If they are too low, add some more chlorine through the skimmer or using tablets in a pool pump basket or floater bag.
Check the filter system. This includes checking all filters, hoses, backwash valves and all plumbing connections between filters, pumps and plumbing lines as well as making sure there are no leaks anywhere.
Pressure washing is an excellent method for removing any dirt, dust or grime that has accumulated on exposed surfaces of your home during its time closed for summer. It comes with the added benefit of cleaning out those hard-to-reach spots (like between shutters) without having to climb up ladders or scaffolding!
List of Internal Items to Review
Moving inside your home, check these end-of-summer home maintenance tasks off your list:
Check for Any Leaks
Leaks can be small or large, but they are all dangerous. Leaks can cause mold and mildew to grow which can cause damage to your home and health. If you notice any signs of water damage on the ceilings, walls, or floors of your home, get that problem fixed before it escalates.
It’s common for faucets to leak, drip, or clog at some point during the year. A dripping faucet can waste hundreds of gallons of water per month – so the sooner you get it fixed, the better.
Service Your Water Heater
Water heaters should be serviced annually. This will ensure that your water heater is running efficiently and safely, as well as help it last longer. When you’re checking your water heater, make sure to inspect the following items:
- The temperature and pressure relief valve is a safety device that releases excess pressure in the tank when it gets too high. It must be in good working order to avoid leaks or even explosions.
- Your anode rod should also be checked at least once per year. This metal rod acts like an armor shield against corrosion issues that may occur within your tank due out of use over time (or if there was an accident involving one).
Check Your HVAC System
A heating and cooling system is essential to a comfortable home. The most basic step is to change the HVAC filters every month. Additionally, an annual professional service and duct clean promotes the energy efficiency and longevity of your system.
Inspect Safety Equipment
From your fire extinguishers and smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to security cameras and alarm systems, test that all are functioning correctly. The peace of mind regarding your safety will contribute to rejuvenating winter break.
Leave It to The Experts at GHMS – What We Can Offer
Your second home is meant to provide you with a place of rest and relaxation. That’s why it’s so important to make sure your home is in tip-top shape before you arrive for the winter months.
For the ultimate in quality care without any of the hassles, let Garden Home Management Services take care of it all. Contact us today to find out more about getting your home ready for vacation season.