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Prepared for winter? Suggestions on winterizing your vehicle, home and lawn can give you ‘peace of mind’

Written by Contributor. Posted in Featured, Home & Garden

Published on October 31, 2018 with No Comments

Winterizing your home

Now is the time to prepare for winter. A few simple home suggestions will help you save energy while decreasing your utility bills.

 

Insulation strips work great around doors and can be applied easily just like sticky tape to help prevent unnecessary cold air from entering your home. Also makes sense to use a draft guard on the bottom of your door’s interior.

• Well Insulated windows

Cracks around window frames are a popular escape point for warm air. Check for weak points around your windows by running the palm of your hand around the edge of the frame. Patch the weak points with some type of sealant by squirting it on and smoothing it over.

• Consider double pane

It might be worth investing in double pane windows if you haven’t already. This could save you hundreds of dollar on your utility bill.

• Use window coverings

Closing blinds or curtains after dark traps in the warm air and prevents drafts, especially if they have thermal backing for added warmth retention. Shrink wrapping your windows will also help retain warmth.

• Fill floor gaps

Most homes have gaps between the skirting board and the floor, and if you have floorboards there’s likely to be a few gaps between them too. Silicone sealer works great to fill the gaps, and putting a rug down isn’t a bad idea either.

• Insulate the attic

One of the most efficient energy savings options is to make sure your attic or loft is well insulated. There are a variety of insulation options available for your home or garage.

• Cover cold walls

If you have a concrete wall in your home with no or bad insulation, it’s a good idea to add insulation and cover with plasterboards or sheetrock.

• Remember

- Run ceiling fans in reverse

- Shut off your outside water source

- Flush out your irrigation system

- Give your heating system a tune-up

- Insulate pipes & seal ducts

“Winterize your lawn” 

• Check pH levels

Before you start winter prep work, test the pH levels of your soil. A neutral pH level is key to a healthy lawn; otherwise your lawn can thin out over time. Treat acidic patches with lime products; areas that are to alkaline can be corrected with sulfur treatment.

• Remove weeds

When preparing your yard for the harsh winter weather, you want to safeguard only the plants that matter. Because perennial weeks compete for nutrients with the rest of your lawn, it’s important to remove them before the long winter.

• Spread fertilizer

Fertilizers formulated for winterizing lawns have higher potassium content than their warm-weather counterparts. They’re designed specifically to strengthen plants under stress. Using a spreader, apply the fertilizer evenly over the grass. Be careful not to over fertilize as adding too much can burn the lawn.

• Aerate to refresh the lawn

Aerating the lawn allows air, water and nutrients to reach down to the roots.

• Spread grass seed

If you live in northern climates, this is the season to spread cool-weather grass seed. The best time to foster new growth is when daytime temperatures are between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

• Continue to remove debris

Leaf removal isn’t the most glamorous of fall tasks, but it’s certainly necessary for your lawn’s health. Raking will also help to remove thatch, the layer of dead grass on top of the lawn, which can prevent water and nutrients from reaching the roots.

“Winterizing your Vehicle”

There are some simple steps that you can take to get your car ready for winter. Many of which are mentioned in your owner’s manual. Taking these steps will give you piece of mind while driving during the harsh winter months.

• Changing your oil.Refer to your owner’s manual for guidance about which oil to use in different climates and temperatures. Oil tends to thicken as it gets colder, and if it’s too thick it won’t do the best job of keeping your engine lubricated.

• Replace your windshield wipers.They usually work effectively for about one year, so be sure to invest in some new ones if you’re due. Fill up your windshield washer fluid. Apply a windshield treatment to prevent fogging of your windshield.

• Check your battery.This is a good time of year to make sure your battery’s posts and connections are corrosion-free and that your battery has all the water it needs. You don’t want to be stuck anywhere in the middle of a snowstorm.

• Check your belts and hoses during your next full service inspection.Cold weather can do a number on belts and hoses, so this is extremely important.

• Check your tire pressure.Your tires must be properly inflated to ensure you’ll have the best possible traction as you drive on snow and ice. Traction is often severely jeopardized in wet, snowy or icy conditions. Menards carries several air compressors that would be useful to have on hand in the event that you need to fill your tiers up before leaving home or while on the road.

• Prepare and emergency kit for each car in your household.Store this in your trunk so it is always available if you run into trouble.

- Blankets

- Boots, gloves and scarf along with additional warm clothing

- Water, food and hard candy

- Ice scrapper

- Small shovel

- Flashlight and flares

- Jumper cables

- Tool kit with tire gauge

- Spare tire with air and all the equipment needed to change a flat tire

- First aid kit

- A bag of abrasive material such as sand, salt or kitty litter to provide traction if you get stuck

Source: Menards home improvementneeds at over 300 stores in categories like tools, lumber, appliances, pet supplies, lawn and gardening and more.

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