Getting your house ready for winter begins as the leaves begin to fall. Inspecting your home and performing routine maintenance now can prevent costly repairs later. Below is a suggested checklist of home maintenance tips you can use this fall:
Gutters - Keeping gutters and downspouts clear of debris prevents them from backing up and damaging roofing especially when cold temperatures cause freezing. Water running behind the gutters can cause problems with rotting, pest infestations, foundation damage and wet basements, so repair or replace gutter hangers and brackets if needed. Check where the water drains to make sure it isn’t collecting in a place that will be damaged or dangerous when frozen.
Chimneys - Make sure the flue is operating properly and the chimney gets cleaned properly if you plan to fire up that fireplace this winter. Also, inspect outside to determine if any tuckpointing or flashing needs attention. If you use a chimney cap to protect the top of your chimney, make sure that it is still attached securely.
Doors and Windows - Lower your heating bills by repairing air leaks around windows and doors. Don’t forget to replace the screens the storm windows and doors. The cooler days of autumn are an ideal time to replace peeling paint and caulk as well.
Plumbing - Drain the spigots and close the valves to outside faucets to prevent freezing and bursting pipes. Insulate the cavities and don’t forget to drain the hose of water.
Attic -Look in the attic after a good rain. This is one way to catch any leaks especially around chimneys and vents. Also check for adequate insulation and seal any air leaks.
Heating - Replace the furnace filter. Do a test run before it gets extremely cold, to ensure that everything is working properly. In the long run, it may pay to have your heating and cooling company clean and inspect your system.
Yard - This is a good time of year to fertilize and reseed lawns. Pay attention and trim any limbs that are close to the roof or power lines. Heavy snow and ice can cause them to fall and do great damage during winter storms. Bring in or protect your outdoor furniture, umbrellas, grills, etc. Make sure all of your outdoor lights and motion detectors are working properly and change their schedules if needed as the days get shorter.
While the farmhand may be a position traditionally overlooked, this featured barn plan includes amenities to make sure that the animals won’t be the only ones with a place to relax. Living quarters boasting a living room, bedroom, bathroom, and a kitchen, assures space for either a residing farmhand or perhaps simply a place for a welcome respite between the morning and afternoon chores. This outbuilding design also offers nine stalls to house animals including one with garage door access allowing for storage of a small tractor or truck with easy accessibility. A tack room allows for storage of animal supplies such as feed and medicine along with a sink and counter that can double as a workbench for the farmer who is looking to fix rather than to replace. The loft and attic on the second level offer additional storage for not only farm equipment and supplies but for those items in your house that may have been making it feel more like a barn than a home.
To view a larger range of styles and designs of outbuilding plans please browse our outbuilding collection.
This contemporary, 2-car garage plan reflects the idea that less is more by offering a modern approach and aesthetic to garages. Offering ample room for 2-car parking, the garage also yields additional room on the side allowing for the installation of a workbench or storage of tools. With this in mind, the garage can double as a DIY mechanic shop providing a space for car maintenance. Alternatively, you can remove both cars creating an open area for the weekend warrior to tackle those home improvement projects.
For more 2-car garage plans please browse our entire collection.
For the family with kids reaching the driving age and having their own cars, parking can often become an issue. Playing musical chairs with the family vehicles shouldn’t have to be an evening affair, nor should rock, paper, scissors decide who is parking in the street that night. This simple 3-car garage offers a solution to these problems by providing an answer to the family with too many cars and too few places to put them. If new family drivers are not the source of your parking troubles, this garage plan also lends itself to the family with a weekend car. Now you no longer have to sacrifice parking your daily travel car outside while the weekend roadster enjoys the shelter. The garage itself includes options for an 8’ ceiling or a 9’ceiling while three individual garage doors provide entrance for each vehicle separately. Finally, a door located on the side of the garage allows for it to be easily connected to a house by a walkway.
View more plans like this one by browsing our collection of 3-car garage plans.
For those looking to make a getaway on weekends, holidays, or vacations this 2-car garage includes a third bay large enough to park the family RV. The 2-car garage offers a 16’ wide x 8’ tall garage door and 9’ ceiling, while the RV bay’s accommodations include a 10’ wide x 12’ tall garage door and a 13’ ceiling height. However, with these measurements not only does the RV bay allow a place to park an RV or motor home but even allows space for boat storage. Not being limited to only RV and boat owners, the spacious large bay can also be used as a gym space, providing enough room to support several pieces of workout material and equipment. Located above the 2-car garage is a loft allowing space for storage. The amenities of the garage go beyond the interior, as the exterior features a Craftsman style design promising to be a perfect complement to any Craftsman style home. View details about this RV garage plan with loft.
To view additional RV garage plans please visit, our RV garage plan collection.