7 Things You Should Clean Before Winter Hits

Get these tasks done before the weather makes them harder.

Cleaning the gutters and washing the windows might not rank high on your list of fun activities (or make the list at all). But if you're ever going to get it done, the fall is the ideal time. It's perfectly reasonable to skip some chores during the summer swelter, but you'll be grateful you tackled them once the temperatures dip, and the snow comes down. Plus, nothing helps procrastination like a good, old-fashioned deadline. Here are seven things you'll want to get done in the fall.

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If you don't clear out the gutters before the winter, the collected debris can create blockages. Once the snow and ice thaw, it will have nowhere to go. The result? Potential leaks in the roof. To save yourself a big headache come spring, hire a pro or clean the gutters yourself.

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If possible, it's best to save window-washing for a cloudy spring or fall day. In the scorching summer sun, the water will evaporate quickly, leaving streaks. In the winter, the water will freeze into icy sheets.

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Siding (and Patio)

Noticed that your home's white siding looks a little gray? Can't even remember what color your patio pavers were before years' worth of grime set in? Time to pull out the pressure washer, or rent one at your local hardware store.

There's a reason power-washing videos are becoming popular on TikTok: The before-and-after transformations are impressive.

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Radiators and Vents

Tackle this chore before you turn the heat on for the season. If you have a metal radiator, use a bottle brush to dust in between the rungs. Place some paper beneath the radiator to catch the debris.

If you have an HVAC system, dust the vents before you turn the heat on. Vacuum each vent using a crevice attachment, then wipe with a microfiber cloth.

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If you have a working fireplace, get the chimney cleaned before cozy season starts. A professional will clear out soot and any creosote buildups, preventing chimney fires and excess smoke.

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Winter Coats

Technically, we recommend getting winter coats cleaned before you store them away for the summer. If that didn't happen this year, now's the time to spruce them up. Check the care label on each coat, then drop them off at the dry cleaner or wash and dry them at home.

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Outdoor Furniture and Hammocks

Before you stash patio furniture and hammocks in the basement or under a waterproof cover for the winter, give them a quick clean. This way, stains won't have a chance to set in. When the weather warms up again, you can just clear away any cobwebs and kick your feet up on that lounge chair.

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