Now that Halloween is over and we are coming down off the sugar-high, it's time to start thinking about the holidays! There are a few calm weeks before the Thanksgiving storm, so take this time to check off some easy maintenance tasks!
Check Smoke Detectors - Push the "test" button on all your alarms to make sure they sound. This is also a good time to change out the batteries, which you should do twice a year. At minimum, you should have one on every level in your home and in all bedrooms. For additional requirements, check out local building codes.
Block Out Pests - Take the time to check out the exterior of your home, especially the roof, for any damaged tiles or holes. Now is the time of year that rodents and other unwelcome pests are looking for a warm place to huddle in for the winter.
Replace Weatherstripping - Check around doors, windows, siding and vents for any gaps or breakages in weatherstripping/caulking. For cracks or holes, expanding foam can be used and is found at most any home improvement store. These fixes can save big bucks on utilities!
Service the Furnace - This can be done DIY-style or by a professional. A few items to check for are making sure the pilot light is on, make sure burners are free of debris, change air filters and testing the igniter switch.
Prep for Holiday Guests - If your home tends to get a lot of overnight guests during the holiday season, prepare your pad ahead of time to make for a smooth transition. Launder your guest linens, wash the china and stock up the toiletries in your guest bathroom.
If you have the time, a few other things to consider would be making sure you are prepared for natural disaster by having extra water, food and blankets on hand. Also, consider calling a professional plumber for an inspection and drain cleaning before the holidays. For plumbers, the Friday after Thanksgiving is called "Brown Friday" for a reason, after all!
Before you start feeling overwhelmed, here is a concise list of how to clean and organize your home before Christmas comes!
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