Last updated on October 23rd, 2023 at 08:29 pm
A walk in the golden autumn light, followed by a slice of apple pie and a cup of tea – autumn certainly has its charms. So that you can enjoy it to the full, there is some work to be done now to get your house and garden ready for winter.
This involves identifying and repairing damage and blemishes, as well as preparing for next spring. Our checklist summarizes what is important now:
Roof Check: To ensure your roof can withstand the storms of fall and winter, now is the time to check for defects and damage. Pay particular attention to loose or damaged roof tiles, as well as cracks in chimney flashings, valleys or dormers.
The inside of the roof should also be inspected. Here, look for moisture stains and damage to the insulation. Many roofing companies offer a professional roof check, during which minor defects can also be repaired directly.
Before prolonged rainfall begins, the gutters should also be checked, cleaned and, if necessary, re-fastened so that passers-by do not get a surprise shower. A leaf guard* prevents autumn leaves from clogging the gutters.
Venting the heating system: Air has often collected in the heating system over the summer, displacing the hot water in the radiator. The result: the room remains cold, but heating costs rise. To ensure that the radiators heat as they should, thorough venting of the heating system is an integral part of the start of the heating season. To do this, the vent valve must be opened with a small square key*.
Here you can find out how to do it yourself.
Windows tight? Leaky windows create an unpleasant draft and can drive up heating costs. It is therefore worth checking at an early stage whether the windows and doors reliably keep out cold and drafts.
You can easily do this yourself by taking an incense stick to help you. Light it and hold it in front of the windows and doors. The smoke will travel with the draft and show you where the problem is. You can winterize leaky windows, for example, with sealing tape available at hardware stores.
Here we reveal more tricks against drafts.
Autumn checklist for house and garden
Not only in the house, but also in the garden or on the balcony there is now a lot to do: The beds must be cleared and prepared for the winter. But one or the other thought of spring is also allowed.
Tubers out, bulbs in: Begonias, dahlias and other perennial tubers are dug up after the first night frosts and stored in a box in the basement or garage for winter. In their place, bulbs for early bloomers can be planted as early as fall: The bulbs are buried with the tip up about twice as deep as they are tall. It is important that the soil is permeable so that waterlogging does not occur. If the bulbs are planted in pots, they should not be placed in warm places. By the way, the popular heather can also be planted in the fall.
Prune sparingly: Diseased or infested perennials can be cut back generously now; healthy plants may be left standing. They provide important overwintering space for insects, and at the same time the branches protect the roots from the cold. For birds, seed pods or similar are an important source of food.
Winter coat for flower beds: in the vegetable garden harvested beds are cleared of the plants. If you have planted raspberry bushes this year, they should be protected from the cold during the first winter with a layer of mulch or straw, or with a covering of brushwood or jute. Berries in pots, like all other potted plants, should be overwintered in a cool place at no more than 10 degrees Celsius. Cover planted beds and borders to protect plants and bulbs from frost. Suitable materials are fir brushwood, straw or jute sheets. They should also wrap well rose bushes and hardy container plants.
Lawn in autumn: fallen leaves must now be collected. Rake them up carefully, keeping in mind that many species of wildlife seek shelter under the foliage. Consider not disposing of all the leaves, but provide a pile of leaves in a corner of the garden as a shelter for hedgehogs or frogs, for example. Once the lawn is cleared of leaves, you can take the lawn mower for its final round for the year. A dry autumn day is also a good time to scarify the lawn.
Important: Remember to turn off all water pipes leading to the outside. Otherwise, in severe frost, the water-carrying pipes can freeze and burst.
With the right preparation, your home and garden will be ready for autumn storms and winter cold.