How to Get Your Home Ready for Winter

in TASTEMAKERS

By Jae Curtis

Your home played a lot of roles during the long summer and autumn months. From protecting your family from the occasional storm to being a kid-friendly hangout, the results can mean that your yard and house are looking a little worse for the wear.

Now—before the official start of the cold weather season—is the perfect time for some fall outdoor cleanup.

By tackling yard work and other maintenance issues now, you can have your home looking great and ready for more inclement weather (and wear and tear) during the winter months. Make sure you address these potential issues before you put your feet up for the season:

Outdoor Cleanup

Fall outdoor cleanup is a messy job, but you won’t mind doing it if you have the right tools. Some of the messiest yard work can be pulling up the last of the weeds in your garden and clearing out your rain gutters.

Messy garden beds need attention, so make sure you clean them up before you prep your garden for the first frost. As for your gutters, months of summer rain, falling leaves, and even animal nests can make them clogged and inefficient. Grab a good pair of lightweight Ultra Grip Waterproof Gloves by Sealskinz and head up a sturdy ladder to clear away debris. Come the first snowfall, you’ll be glad your gutters are in great shape.

Everything from bugs and mud to dirty shoes and rain runoff can leave messy residue on your home, decks, and other surfaces. Your hose won’t cut it for cleaning, so invest in a good-quality power washer to really cut the grime during your fall outdoor cleanup.

The 2800 psi Gas-Powered Pressure Washer by Craftsman has enough power to blast away messes without doing damage to your paint. While you’re at it, show your deck—and even your driveway—some love.

Leaf Lockup

If you’re short on time or don’t want to spend all of your weekend toiling in the yard, raking leaves by hand is out of the question. Besides being time-consuming, it might not be the most efficient way to get your yard leaf-free before the snow flies.

Instead, opt for a leaf blower like the 12 amp Leaf Blower/Vacuum by Black & Decker to clean up leaves (even the ones that blew over from your neighbor’s yard) in a snap. You can either vacuum them up to throw in the trash or add to a compost pile.

Garden Prep

Your garden bloomed all summer, and now is the time to prep it for cold weather so it comes back strong in the spring. Clear out any dead plants and weeds and plant any winter perennials you may have. Keep your soil healthy by spreading mulch over bare spots, and then cover less-hardy shrubs with burlap to protect them from cold wind, frigid temps, and the snow. Make the prepping process easier on your knees by using a garden stool like the Picnic Time Gardening Kit so your tools are nearby and you don’t need to kneel down into your garden.

Your fall outdoor cleanup shouldn’t take a lot of time. With a couple of free Saturday afternoons, you can get rid of the last vestiges of a summer well-lived to prepare for the unpredictable weather and cooler temperatures of autumn and winter. Your home and yard won’t only have amazing curb appeal, but they’ll also be better maintained for a safer, more comfortable season.

A leaf blower makes yard cleanup fast and efficient. Click here to scope the 12 amp Leaf Blower/Vacuum by Black & Decker at Sears!

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