By the end of summer, more people are lamenting the fact that the warm weather is leaving and the days are getting shorter. However, the proactive homeowner is getting motivated to double-check their houses for any out-dated maintenance, and calling a home inspection professional with any possible concerns. 

The fall is also the perfect time to look over storm windows and doors. These components are especially important during the winter, and without quality seals any leak could mean higher energy bills and a colder home. Instead of waiting to make critical upgrades and repairs, a homeowner should do the fixes in the fall, and have a property inspection completed to make sure every dilemma is taken care of. 

Choosing the ideal storm window

Over the course of the summer it is possible to detect window leaks, since cooling costs will be higher as all of that cold air escapes daily, according to This Old House. Not only is that an issue, but it might also lead to rain getting through the cracks and into the home. 

Storm windows are a viable solution to this problem, general contractor Tom Silva explained to the website. 

"A good storm stops air infiltration about as well as most replacement windows, and the upfront costs are much lower," said Silva. "It's like putting money in your pocket."

In addition, higher quality storm windows are a smart investment. Going cheap might only end up costing more in the long run, as the protection may not be long-lasting and the window could break down. Strength and durability are key, here, Silva added. The lower the quality of the window, the more likely there will be a leak or rattle in the near future.

Types of storm windows

As an affordable replacement option, storm windows can help limit air movement and heating and cooling costs, according to the Department of Energy. 

Moreover, there are two major categories - interior of the primary window and exterior. They can be made out of plastic, glass, or a hybrid version. A home inspection may be able to determine the problems with the current windows and doors, and offer the best solution for the homeowners. 

Out of the two main types, glass is slightly more expensive, but it is longer lasting, the Department of Energy noted. One potential downside is how easy glass storm windows scratch, while plastic versions tend to be more resistant. 

Without proper care and maintenance, plastic panels may turn yellow and reduce the functionality of the window.

Picking and maintaining the perfect storm door

The simplest, most classic design for a storm door is the half window view with a flat panel, according to the DIY Network. This choice offers a great look for the front entry-way to a house, and that might increase curb appeal and raise the overall value.

In fact, a property inspection should clarify any exterior home problems, as well as anything on the inside that may reduce home equity. Storm doors are the perfect way to help protect an entry door from the elements, especially during the winter. In most cases, it is best to have the hinges for both on the same side, the DIY Network noted. 

Due to the fact that storm doors are frequently used and abused, correct maintenance is a must to keep them working properly. The hinges are a good place for a homeowner to start, and keeping them oiled will help make sure that they open and close consistently. 

The door-closing mechanism might become damaged in high winds, which might mean that it needs to be replaced. Switching out any pieces, including glass and screen panels, requires a tight fight to ensure there won't be any leaks afterwards. 

Overall, a home inspection is a smart decision when planning for winter, and it can identify a number of concerns within a property.