Keep your home in shape throught the year.



Make a list of projects you plan to complete during the year. Include big projects so you can budget ahead.
Check toilets for leaks.

• Post important emergency info:
Location of main gas valve, for instance, or contact numbers for heating and cooling service.


• Organize garage or shed; clean, sharpen and lubricate yard tools.
• Dispose of old paint, and prop­erly. Add waste paint hardener, avail­able at hardware stores and home centres.
• Clean lint from dryer exhaust ducts and vents.



• Repair window screens. Save old screening for future patches.
• Build or repair fences and arbors. • Repair deck boards as needed; remove protruding nails and replace with coated or galvanized screws. Be sure to check and tighten bolts in deck supports.
• Clean and seal wood deck as necessary. Deck stains with at least some pigment last longer than clear sealers.
• Check the operation of your garage-door opener. Consult owner's manual.
• Add a garage-door keypad outside for convenience - but be sure to keep it out of reach of young children.
• Move firewood at least 30 feet away from house; pull wood mulch away from foundation.


• Reverse ceiling fans - they should have been blowing upward during the winter-and clean tops of fan blades.
• Check to be sure winter wind hasn't lifted vinyl and aluminum sid­ing, and repair as needed.
• Wash siding and gutters. You'll have fewer streaks if you start at the bottom. Always be careful with ladders around power lines!
• Scrape and touch up exterior paint, paying special attention to window sills, gable vents, garage doors.



• Clean gas grill and replace any' rusted or damaged parts.
• Check crawl space for moisture and remove debris. If you spot signs of termites, call a pro.
• Clean concrete drives, walkways and patios, and repair as needed.



• Vacuum coils behind refrigerators and freezers to ensure proper operation. (Don't forget about those appliances in the basement or garage.)
• Check supply hoses to washing machines. If hoses are soft or cracked, replace them. (They seem to break when you're away on vacation.)
• Remove toe panel from front of dishwasher and check for leaks under the appliance.



Trim shrubs away from heat pump compressor, and trim those blocking crawl-space ventilation.
Cut back tree limbs that are touching roof. Be careful around power lines!
Flush water heater as needed Be sure to turn off power to water heater before draining, and refill before restoring power.
Open and close cutoff valves to sinks and toilets. You don't want to discover during a plumbing emergency that valves are stuck.


• Call heating service to schedule fall heating system checkup; call propane company to fill tanks.
• If you smell a musty odour during peak air-conditioning season, check ducts for leaks. Repair leaks with mastic - not duct tape.
• Replace light bulbs with compact fluorescents. Information:,/
• Check operation of door and window locks, and replace as needed before you go on vacation.


• Test smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, and replace batteries.
• Caulk around windows and doors. If you're going to paint, choose a caulk that's paintable. Pay special attention to places where dissimilar materials such as brick and wood meet.
• Be sure weep holes in storm windows are open to allow water to escape.
• Vacuum gas logs, and be sure they're properly seated before operating.


• Add new sweeps to the bottom of exterior doors as needed to block cold air.
• Reverse those ceiling fans again. They should blow upward in winter, to push warm air across ceiling and down walls.
• Clean gutters. Use hose to be sure downspouts are flowing freely.


• Check roof from ground with binoculars. Replace or repair any curled or missing shingles.
• Drain and winterize irrigation system; the backflow preventer is most vulnerable.
• Seal holes in foundation, espescially spots around pipes and wires where rodents might enter.


• Create a fire escape plan for family and practice it. Be sure fire extinguishers are properly filled. Information:
• Get rid of old medicines, and make sure household chemicals are out of reach of children. Post poison hotline number near phone.
• Make sure everyone knows location of main water shutoff, and that you keep access clear. Show neighbour where to find shutoff, too.


reno info