Getting your home ready for the onset of cooler temperatures may seem daunting when the days are still warm, but preparing for all those maintenance tasks will help you complete the work and give you peace of mind that your space is safe, clean and ready to take on the changing weather, indoors and out.
Inside the Home
- Dust the ceilings and wipe down walls and baseboards.
- Wash the window frames, windows and doors. If your window screens are removable, take them off and hose them down (this is where the most dirt accumulates).
- Vacuum floor vents thoroughly.
- Wipe down the inside and outside of kitchen cupboards with warm soapy water (it’s amazing how much grease makes it onto cupboard doors!).
- Wipe down bathroom drawers, bookshelves and other level dust-collecting surfaces.
- Clean appliances as well as floor and wall areas around them.
- Give your entire home a thorough vacuum, including under furniture and in every nook and cranny.
- Mop the floors.
- Clean your furniture using a product or tool that’s suited to each material.
- Take rugs to a professional cleaner or give them a good going over yourself with a rented machine.
- Check your furnace filter and replace if necessary.
- If you have a fireplace and chimney, clean the inside of the fireplace and have a professional do a chimney sweep before you start lighting fires.
- Ensure your air conditioning unit is in good, clean condition and is covered properly before storing it.
- Open the safety valve of the hot water heater to eliminate limescale.
- Clean the dust and residue that could block the passage of air in appliances such as your dryer or range hood.
Outside the Home
- Hose down or power wash the exterior of your home (a quick rinse will often do).
- Clean out your eavestroughs to ensure there are no leaves or debris that will block the flow of any precipitation.
- Rinse out and disinfect your garbage and recycling bins (this task is much easier to do before the snow hits the ground).
- Tidy up and organize your outdoor spaces like the garage and the shed (this will make it easier and faster to access your things when it’s freezing cold outside).
- Turn off the outside taps, empty the hose and store appropriately.
- Clean all outdoor furniture and store appropriately.
- Ensure your outdoor lawn maintenance equipment is cleaned and stored properly.
- Do a thorough cleaning of your barbecue to make sure there’s absolutely no food residue left on it and cover it properly (this is very important because small rodents seek warmth in the fall, and a yummy barbecue is a common place for that to happen!).
- Clean all garden tools and store them in a dry place.
- Inspect the foundation of your home and immediately address any detached or crumbling surfaces, as the deterioration will only get worse in cold weather.
- Check that exterior stairs and railings are in good condition to avoid any slipping hazards in icy weather.