Posted by: Elise Stern, Created date: October 31, 2013


The weekend most Canadians fall back one hour is also the ideal time to tackle seasonal safety projects. A lot of the routine maintenance on your home and car should be done twice a year, so what better time to start checking items off your "to-do" list?


  • Replace the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, and test both devices to make sure they are in working order. Tip: Don't toss the batteries; there may still be juice in them. They can be used in children's toys, media players or electronic devices. Squeeze out every drop of power, then recycle them.

  • Clean gutters and downspouts to keep debris from accumulating. This is especially important now that the leaves are falling.

  • Make an appointment to have your furnace cleaned and inspected by a qualified technician so it is working properly and efficiently all winter.

  • Bring out of hiding, all the winter gear you'll need to clear your walk, like shovels, sand and salt.

  • Have your chimney cleaned so your fireplace will be ready for use.

  • Go through your medicine cabinet for expired medication. Your pharmacist should be able to either take your old medications or provide you with information about where to dispose of them.

  • Inventory your home's first aid kit and replace items that are expired, or replenish items like bandages that may be running low.

  • Switch your incandescent lights to compact fluorescent lights (CFLs). Although initially more expensive, CFLs save you money in the long run; they use 75% less electricity and can last up to 10 times longer.


  • Remove your golf clubs from the trunk and replace with a winter weather car safety kit. You can buy one or make your own.

  • Change your wiper blades. They should be replaced every six months.

  • A change of season equals a change of oil. This will help to ensure your car operates at peak efficiency.

  • If you change your tires seasonally, now is a good time to put your winter tires on. A good rule of thumb is to put your snow tires on when the temperature drops to 7° Celsius. Also, do not mix-and-match; install four winter tires. Tip: Did you know some insurers will offer a discount to policyholders who change their tires seasonally?

  • If you don't change your tires seasonally, check your tire pressure and treads. If your tire pressure is off you'll notice irregular and uneven wear on your treads, reduced vehicle handling or decreased gas mileage.

  • Last but not least, take your car in for a tune up because winter weather can really take a toll on it. A complete check-up can be vital in keeping your car running smoothly.

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