It’s been warmer than usual, but a look at the weather map tells us that the cold north wind is already picking up even as we sit down to turkey and stuffing. Here at the store, when we’re not doing last-minute window installations of made-for-Michigan windows, we’re doing what everyone else in Southeast Michigan is doing: winterizing! You know your home best, but I thought I’d make a short list of some places to check if you find yourself with some get-up-and-go and some free time this weekend:
• Exterior doors – How’s the weather-stripping? Air leaks can cost plenty this time of year.
• Windows – Last chance to clean the windows (including the tracks and screens) before Old Man Winter takes over the neighborhood.
• Sliding glass doors – Give some attention to the tracks and adjust any parts that are getting contentious.
• Automatic garage door – Clean and lubricate moving parts; avoid applying anything to the tracks. Detroit winters are much nicer without the moan and groan of a cranky garage door.
• Gutters – Repair or replace damaged guttering and remove all debris, making sure that downspout extensions will direct the Spring Thaw away from the house.
• Furnace – Change the filter and examine the belts for wear. Call for annual servicing if needed. We love to go on about saving energy, and this simple task can yield a nice payoff in energy savings.
• Fireplace – If you have a fireplace and you haven’t done so yet this year, you may want to have the chimney swept by a professional (that way, you can keep your football-watching clothes clean). Also, tend to the firebox and make sure you have some dry wood ready for those long winter nights.
• Patio – Santa may appreciate “settin’ a spell” on your snow-covered patio furniture while the reindeer have a snack, but your patio furniture prefers to be out of the weather. Santa will have to catnap in the sleigh this year.
• Light timers – Check your light timer to make sure the exterior lighting pops on when darkness has begun to settle in (earlier as we near the winter solstice). It’s easy to forget in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, but a little illumination goes a long way when the sidewalks are icy.
Well, there you go. Just a few ideas. If you have any others to add to the list, we’d sure like to hear about it. Post your comments or stop in and see us. Meanwhile, the best of Thanksgiving to you and yours from the folks at Kearns Brothers.