Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Along with the beauty of the fall colors, comes a yearly winterizing check of your home. Make certain your list includes cleaning and checking the following:


*Fireplaces and wood stoves and pipes

*Furnace filters and ducts (cleaning air ducts is best left to the professionals and is necessary once a year)

*Drain lawnmowers, replace spark plugs etc

*Check car tires, belts, plugs, radiator fluids etc. Make sure your chains are ready and you have a good ice scraper handy.

*Use an augur, drain cleaner or call a plumber to clear your drains before they clog. Winter is a terrible time for overflow problems. It's colder and takes longer for water to dry if a drain overflows giving mold and mildew time to cause structural problems.

*Wash or dry clean stored blankets, bedding, coats and sweaters before you need them.

*Dispose of any and all old paint, varnishes etc. Be sure the cans you do keep are stored away from sources of heat along with any flammable material.

*Check your home for any cracks that might need sealing. Clean windows and framing making sure the drain holes are unplugged.

*Trim bushes back away from the house so they don't hold in the moisture. This helps reduce mold and mildew growth next spring and gives your foundation that breathing space it needs.

*Replace smoke detector batteries.

*Have your fire extinguisher checked to make sure it is working. Do you have the right fire extinguisher? There is a difference. Do you have one conveniently located in each part of your home and not tucked away at the back of a closet?

*Clean outdoor grills. Properly store propane gas.

*Toss out old candles. Replace them with soy candles that burn with very little smoke. Look for ones that burn with natural, not lead, wicks. Your lungs and arms will love you for it. It takes a lot of elbow grease removing soot stains from walls. Breathing that smoke and lead can be a killer – literally.

*Look for natural cleaning products to clean your home. The toxic buildup of chemicals fumes cause a multitude of health problems. This worsens during the winter when windows and doors remain shut. Homes are built to be air tight. They don't let cold air in or fumes out. If you are suffering from headaches, asthma or other health problems it could be caused from the chemicals you use.

*Winter is especially hard on leather, vinyl and wood furniture. The heat from fireplaces and furnaces dries and cracks them. Clean and condition all your furniture.

Reprinted from "Mary Moppins" a free ezine featuring tips, tricks and tools for cleaning just about anything. This article may be reprinted only with proper credit given to Mary Findley, owner of Mary Moppins at

No comments: