In our last post about being winter-ready at home we shared tips on ways to prepare yourself to thrive through the cold winter months. In that post we went over things to consider when preparing to stay warm, and also staying safe. In this post, part two of this series, we are going to talk about what areas of your home need extra attention for winter preparation, and also how to meet yours and your family’s basic winter needs.
What areas to prep
Turn off sprinklers and drain outside faucets
This really is a more of an action that you take in fall as you prepare for winter. But if you haven’t done it yet it’s an important thing to do, especially before really cold weather sets in! Water left in pipes can freeze and then expand, breaking the pipes and causing significant water damage which is especially challenging to clean up in the winter. This is a completely preventable mishap so be a mindful homeowner/renter and turn off your exterior faucets.
Winterize your mower and other yard care
Want to know a time-saving trick on how to get up all those leaves before the first snowfall? Mow them up instead of raking them! If you can swap out your cutting blade with a mulching one, you won’t even have to bag the leaves when you’re done. The trick though, is to cut them while they are dry and then let them fall back into your grass where they can decompose and nourish your lawn. Leaving fall leaves can be a huge headache for the spring. To take the best care of your lawn mower you’re also going to want to empty out the gas for the winter. Fuel that remains in a mower will decompose inside the engine, varnishing the carburetor and causing difficulty for you when you go to use the mower the coming spring. You can either let the gas run out completely after your final mow of the season, or add a stabilizer to your fuel.
How to cover your basic needs
Make sure you have snow shovels and ice melt on hand
Have you ever waited for the first snow fall before making sure you were outfitted with all the gear you needed? If you don’t have a good working snow shovel or ice melt on hand, make sure to stock up and get them now so that you’re not stuck behind an unexpected snow fall.
Stock up on winter gear for your family
It’s almost embarrassing to admit that in years past, as the first snow fell, I have run to the store in search of boots, coats, gloves and hats for my kids. One year it was particularly bad because when I got there they were completely out of the sizes I needed. So make sure you’ve got winter gear for everyone in the home because it’s too late when the storm is coming down. Now if you’re already on top of this area and feeling particularly prepared, you’re in a perfect situation to truly make a difference for someone else. There are organizations that collect winter clothing for others. One Warm Coat is one such non-profit organization that works hard to provide a warm and free coat to any person in need. You can donate a gently used or brand new coat to local volunteers who then will distribute your donation to someone in-need, in your very own community. I’m thinking that this would be an awesome family service project for the holiday season!
Stock up on 1-3 months of food
Last week we announced our really exciting partnership with Food Storage Made Easy and shared how easy it is to go through her checklist steps to prepare your family for anything. Checklist #4 takes you through a step by step process of planning and purchasing a three month supply of food which you regularly eat. I know this can seem like a really overwhelming task, but her system is tried and true and really simplifies the process! Download Para today and get this checklist! This is probably the most important step in the entire process of winterizing your home!
Download PARA today and get going on your prep lists!
We have a handful of lists specifically geared towards winter preparedness. Living in an area where the temperatures drop, you do need to make sure to have extra winter gear on hand. Not long ago there was a substantial earthquake in Alaska, knocking out power and even affecting water supply. In the coming weeks we will be sharing specific tips on how to be ready for this kind of emergency, especially in colder weather. Stay tuned for that! But for now, head on over to the Para App and get going on a few of our winter checklists. Below you’ll see images of the top three lists that we’d recommend when being mindful of winter preparedness.