DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Soak up the last hours of summer. Fall is officially here on Thursday, and it is time to think about preparing your home and yard for the autumn and winter months.

Miami Valley residents are getting a little treat with 90-degree weather on Wednesday, but as fall comes in on Thursday, temperatures will plummet, causing some to turn the heat on for the first time of the season. but before you turn the heat on, you want to make sure it works properly before you need it.

Mike Pruett, Buckeye Improvement sales manager said that the furnace filter is one of the pieces to check. . “Most of those need to be changed every couple months, every six months, and honestly – turn the furnace on. Let it run, let it get going, make sure it is working,” Pruett said. “You don’t want to find out your furnace isn’t up and running when it is 20 degrees out.”

Leaves are beginning to change color and will soon fall, needing to be cleaned up. Miami Township has an efficient leaf collection program, starting with residents raking up leaves, then the township picking them up and dumping them at two local landscaping companies, benefiting everyone involved.

John Schweickart, Miami Township Public Works director said, “We’re able to dump those leaves there and then, in turn, we don’t get charged for them and we don’t have to charge the residents. And then they basically use them for compost. They grind up the leaves and then it turns into rich soil and then they repurpose it.”

Leaves aren’t only a problem for your lawn, but also for your gutters. Depending on the tree coverage, gutters could require multiple cleanings per year to keep runoff water flowing.

“It’s a good idea to just keep an eye on just the water flowing freely, and if it is getting backed up, then get up and clear it out, or hire a professional,” Schweikart said. “Falling off a ladder is not a fun thing. It can be pretty dangerous, so don’t be afraid to find a professional that will clean those gutters out for you.”

If you have a fireplace, it is also recommended that you get the chimney cleaned before the seasons change.