5 household chores to complete before winter - HMS National, Inc.

5 household chores to complete before winter

September 22, 2014

The brisk days of autumn are the perfect time to complete your home's winter preparation. However, with all the football games and fun fall activities, chores are probably the last thing you want to do. Set some time aside for these essential chores before the first freezing night so your house and family is ready for the cold. Then, you can get back to fall festivals and pumpkin picking!

1. Clean comforters
You'll want to clean all the thick blankets in your house before the chilly weather sets in. Send your family's favorite comforters to the laundromat or dry cleaner's while it's still warm enough to use a light blanket. This is also a good opportunity to see which blankets need to be replaced. You'll be glad to have a clean and cozy blanket to curl up in once the snow starts to fall.

2. Double-check boots and coats
When you switch out summer clothes for sweaters and scarves, don't just push warm coats and boots to the back of your closet. Instead, take a minute to inspect them for wear and tear. You might have forgotten that your favorite winter shoes need a polish or that your coat needs to be relined. Noticing these problems early will give you time to get shoes and clothing fixed or replaced before you need them.

3. Test alarms
According to the U.S. Fire Administration, you should change the backup batteries in your smoke detectors at least once a year. If you passed your alarms over during spring cleaning, make sure to take care of them this fall. Once you've replaced batteries be sure to test both smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Making these tests a monthly habit will help ensure that your family and home are safe.

4. Trim trees
Winter weather can cause damage to your house, car or power lines if there are dead trees around. The National Association for Home Builders recommended trimming your trees and removing all dead branches during the fall. Some warning markers that a tree might need to be removed are hanging branches, cracks in the trunk or mushrooms at the base. Be safe and call a professional tree service for any large jobs.

5. Clean vents and radiators
You'll also want to vacuum out any vents, baseboards and radiators in your home. During the summer, these areas will build up a lot of dust. If you turn the heat on, all those particles will be circulated through the house, causing sneezing and irritation.

The information in these articles is intended to provide guidance on the proper maintenance and care of systems and appliances in the home. Not all of the topics mentioned are covered by our home warranty or maintenance plans. Please review your home warranty contract carefully to understand your coverage.