Winter Maintenance

With the weather all over the place these days, now is a good time to make sure your final quarter home maintenance is complete. If you have not already done this, there is still plenty of time to get your home ready for winter.

Some items to check this quarter are:

  • Weather stripping
  • Winterizing landscaping
  • Flushing the hot water heater and removing sediment
  • Turning off and flushing water lines
  • Checking for any ice build up
  • And since you are inside a lot, tighten any handles around your home

Weather stripping, window sealing, and winterizing your landscaping can seem daunting. Start with one room and work your way through your home. Same rule applies outside, start in one corner of your yard and work your way around it. Most home improvement stores carry items to help keep your home free from drafts and the cold. Take your time to see if your doors need sealing or your windows need covering before you purchase any specific items. You want to keep your warm air in and your cold air out!

You’ll want to take advantage of the warmer days to flush your water heater. If you don’t want to flush the whole tank, let a bucket of water drain out. It should still carry the sediment out. While you’re draining your water heater, check the pressure and temperature. Everyone will want a warm shower or bath, so you’ll want to make sure it’s operating correctly.

If you have not unhooked any hoses or outside water lines, now is the time to do it. Don’t let water freeze in your pipes and burst – that can be costly in many ways and you risk mold growing.

Once it does get cold enough, walk around outside – preferably bundled up – and check to see if any ice is forming on your gutters, walkways, or any other area around you home. If so, make note and see if you have a build up somewhere. Having pet-safe salt or kitty litter around during winter will help keep your walkways clear. An important note – if you walk around your home in the cold, make sure to reward yourself with a cup of hot chocolate!

Since colder weather usually keeps us inside, take the opportunity to test all handles and pulls in each room of your home. Now is the time to tighten any that are loose and to repair or replace any that are broken. You can also check your outlet covers at the same time and replace any that have been damaged.

If you need more than simple maintenance done to your home, give the Home Builders Association (HBA) a call for a referral. Angie’s List and Home Advisor are one source for home referrals, but please know that companies pay to be listed on the site and pay even more to be listed first. Calling your local HBA is a great way to talk with someone from the community who knows the local companies and what services they offer. As we say, it’s best to do your research before starting any project.

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Joplin, MO 64804


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