First and foremost, let me wish all of our fantastic HomeSpot users and friends a very Happy Thanksgiving. Like many, we will be opening our home this holiday to family, and had a flurry of cleaning and little projects to prepare for their arrival. Additionally, I heard from many who are in those parts of the country already being hit with snow storms and power outages as Fall gives way to Winter. It got me thinking about using the Thanksgiving weekend not for Christmas Shopping, but getting our homes ready for the cold season ahead. Here’s 5 simple preparations you can do this weekend.
1. Check your weatherstripping. There really is no easier way to prepare your home for the cold then to check and seal up drafts around doors and windows.
2. Flush your sprinkler system and cover your spigots. If you are lucky enough to have an in ground sprinkler system, it’s time to get it flush out to prevent freezing this winter. For those hose bibs around your home, wrap exposed pipe with foam insulation, and cover the bib with an insulated cover to prevent freezing.
3. Get your holiday lights organized and checked. What better way to take advantage of house guests than to enlist them in untangling a mess of cords and bulbs. Check and make a list of replacement bulbs you’ll need, then brave the masses at the home improvement center.
4. Rake. Rake. Rake. Around our house, every able body is handed a rake and shown the front yard, where the leaves and acorns from the mature Red Oak tree blanket the lawn, flower beds and driveway. Make an outing of the chore by having a ‘biggest pile’ contest. You can either bag the leaves up for disposal by your county or city, or make your own mulch by running them over with the lawn mower.
5. Show your furnace some love. Since Thanksgiving falls at the end of the month, it is a great time to replace all your filters. Also, installing a programmable thermostat is an easy and inexpensive way to help optimize the heating of your home. I like to program the heat to start up about 30-45 minutes before wake up, so by the time we come down to make breakfast, the kitchen is warmed up a bit.
I hope that this holiday weekend is full of fun, enjoyment, and time catching up with friends and family.