Life can get pretty busy, but Winter is fast approaching and that first snowfall can come as quite a surprise, especially if you are not prepared for it. Don’t let yourself get caught off-guard. Follow these tips and be prepared.
Winterize your health. Winter is flu season. To give yourself the best chances of avoiding the flu this Winter, now is the time to get a flu shot.
Winterize your home. There are many things you can do to get your home prepared for the cold and snow that accompany winter.
- Put away or secure and cover all of your outside furniture.
- Put away your lawn mower and get out the snow blower or shovels. Make sure they are easy to access for that first snowfall. If you use a snow blower, make sure that it is in good working order.
- Clean out your gutters. Be sure they are free from leaves and debris which would prevent proper drainage and could result in water damage to your home.
- Have your sprinkler system blown out to ensure that there is no water left in the lines which could freeze and cause the pipes to burst.
- Be sure that all storm windows are in place.
- Check the caulking around all windows and doors. If any is cracked or loose, replace it to prevent drafts.
- Change your furnace filter and consider having your furnace serviced to be sure it is in good working order.
- Program your thermostat to keep your home warm enough without wasting energy.
Winterize your vehicle. When you are getting ready for Winter, don’t forget about your vehicle. Here are some things you can do to make sure your vehicle is prepared:
- Check your tires. Make sure they have the proper amount of air and that they have enough tread left on them to get enough traction on snow-covered streets.
- Have your battery checked. Batteries are more likely to fail in the Winter.
- Check to be sure your windshield washer solvent is full and that you have some extra bottles on hand. With slush splattering all over your windshield you can really go through a lot of washer solvent in the Winter.
- Check your windshield wiper blades and replace them if necessary.
- Be sure that your vehicle is stocked with snow scrapers and brushes. You may even want to store a small shovel and a bag of sand or kitty litter in the trunk in case you get stuck in the snow.
Winterize your cabinets. Just before Thanksgiving canned goods are typically on sale. Check your local grocery store for good prices and stock up on canned goods and other non-perishable items. If a storm hits unexpectedly you be sure to have enough food to eat until you can make it back out to the store.
Winterize your wardrobe. As with every change in season, now is the time to go through your closets. Make sure your winter coats are easily accessible. Locate all hats, gloves, scarves and boots and move them to the front of the closet. Rearrange your clothes closet to make your warmer clothes easier to access. While you are doing all of this, it is the perfect time to clear out some clutter.
Winterize your attitude. Don’t let yourself catch a case of cabin fever. Many people take a trip to a tropical location to get away from the cold and the snow. If this is not a possibility for you, you know what they say – if you can’t beat them, join them. Try to embrace the season. Get out there and have some fun! If you have never been downhill skiing, give it a try.
Have a safe and happy winter.
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Written by Tracy Alt