We are not really good at remembering when to do some necessary tasks around the house. Sometimes, we forget that we can save money if we do some simple things around the house during the fall months and we’ve regretted it when they haven’t been done. So, we tend to remember them by season instead of certain dates. The Cuban knows that whenever the calendar gets turned to October his “Honey-Do” list automatically increases to include the following things. Not all of them are specific to fall, but if you add them to a season-change list then at least they get done and they are not forgotten.
Empty Gas Tanks for Mowers 1 of 10
Lawn mowers should be empty of all the gasoline used in it previously. Mow a patch of grass until it's empty. Cold weather separates the water from the gas and the water freezes, thus ruining your mower. If you live in a place that has 4 seasons like we do, this is a must to save your mower.
Reverse Ceiling Fans 2 of 10
When you reverse the ceiling fan direction you push warm air down from the ceiling and can save on heating costs. A switch on the side of most ceiling fans switches the direction it rotates. It should be rotating clockwise in the cooler months.
Vacuum Vents 3 of 10
All of our air vents and return vents usually need a good vacuuming by this time of year. While this will make your furnace more efficient, I mostly do it because I can't stand how disgusting the vents look after blowing cool air all summer long. I usually stare at it until I can no longer take it. Vents can be easily removed by taking out the screws that hold them in place. Who wants to blow that nasty gunk on you during the fall when allergy season has already begun anyway?
Clean Garage Floors 4 of 10
I really mean that you should pick up everything off the garage floor that you don't want getting wet when you start tracking in rain and snow. More than once we have left something on the floor of the garage all summer long just to get ruined the first time we brought in a car-load of snow.
Turn Off Exterior Water Faucets 5 of 10
Turning off the outside water spigot/faucet can help save your pipes because the leftover water trapped inside can freeze. It damages the faucet or, worse, causes the pipes to burst inside your walls. Illinois tends to get severely cold winters and remembering to do this can save you a lot of money.
Replace Furnace Filters 6 of 10
We used to call and set an appointment for a guy to come out and do this. We paid anywhere from $65 - $100 for them to "winterize" our furnace. We aren't really sure what exactly we were paying for but we knew we got a new filter out of the deal. The Cuban found out what kind of filter it was and now replaces it in spring and fall for less than $2. Changing filters is essential for people with allergies.
Cut Perennials Back 7 of 10
Horticulture is my middle name. And I also own a bridge in Brooklyn that I'll sell you if you're interested. We aren't really sure why this works better but somewhere along the way somebody told us to cut all our perennials after the first frost. Trial and error have proven that they grow better the following summer if we do. So we do.
Clean Exterior Dryer Vents 8 of 10
Unless we somehow manufacture more lint than the average household, our dryer can almost totally clog the vent on the outside of the house where it exhausts in a year's time. It's really easy, too. Just remove the screws (ours has 4) and pull out all the lint that has accumulated. You will find that your clothes will dry faster and it also saves on your electric bill by making the dryer more efficient.
Change Smoke Alarm Batteries 9 of 10
Some people do this when the clock changes for Daylight Savings Time. We put it on the Fall list and it usually gets done about the same time as when the clock changes for Daylight Savings Time.
Check Status of Snow Removal Equipment 10 of 10
Take it from me: the last thing you want to do on the morning of the first blizzard of the year is to be driving from store to store in that blizzard for a snow shovel. Checking the status of your snow removal equipment now can save you a lot of hassle and probably a lot of money. When the snow falls, the prices of shovels goes up. If you have a snowblower, this is the best time to make sure all the maintenance is done and it's running properly.