This winter has been long, frigid and snowy.
The steps you take now can help avoid costly maintenance and repairs later. Here’s what to do inside and outside your home:
- Inspect the roof and gutters. Check the roof for damage; it’s been taking a beating all season. Then clear gutters of debris; a clog can lead to water damage.
- Check the HVAC system. Hire a professional to clean and service your system. You also should clean or replace filters; it’ll help ensure your system is running efficiently, keep energy costs in check and remove extra allergens from your home.
- Clean and repair driveways, fences, decks and patios. Spray away salt, sand and deicers. Then fill any cracks, holes or gaps.
- Examine windows, doors and seals. Look for damage. Sealants can crack in extreme cold, leading to water damage and drafts. Clean the window panes, drapes and blinds too.
- Inspect paint inside and outside. Make any necessary paint repairs or try a fresh look.
- Replace smoke detector batteries. If you didn’t do this when daylight saving time began, do it now.
- Steam-clean floors and carpets. Remove salt, sand and deicing chemicals.
- Examine your chimney. Hire a chimney sweep to check the exterior for damage and clean the flue.
- Vacuum underneath and behind your refrigerator. A dusty, dirty fridge also increases electric bills.
- Clean out the refrigerator, freezer and pantry. Toss expired foods, clean surfaces and reorganize.
- Declutter closets. Donate, repurpose, recycle or set aside clothes for a garage sale.
- Prepare lawn equipment. Make sure your lawn mower and weed whacker are clean, gassed up and ready for the first spring cut.