How to Winterize Your Summer Equipment

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winterize_summer_toolsUnless you’re lucky enough to live in a moderate climate where your grass is green all year long, it may be time to retire your lawn mower and other gardening tools for the year.

You may be tempted to throw everything in your shed, brushing your hands of summer and fall chores in one loud swoop – but come next spring, you might regret that decision. Instead, take a bit of time to winterize your garden and landscaping equipment with these tips:

• Clean everything thoroughly. Make sure any dirt and vegetation is scraped and washed off the equipment. If using a pressure washer, ensure your tools are completely dry before storing them.
• Carefully use steel wool to remove any rust from your tools or blades (be sure to wear awesome gloves if dealing with blades!)
• If your equipment uses motor oil, drain them of it now and dispose of the oil as required by your local laws.
• If your equipment uses gasoline, you don’t have to drain the tank, but a Fuel Stabilizercan prevent gum, rust and corrosion from affecting the tank, carburetor jets, valves, pistons and spark plugs.
• If any of your equipment needs fixing or sharpening, now is a good time to do it. We all know what it’s like to pull out something seasonal right when you want to use it only to find out it’s out of commission (that winter coat you meant to replace the buttons on should be a recent reminder of this)!
• To prevent rust from run-off leaks and freezing, wrap your equipment in plastic tarps and store them in a secure, dry place. If your shed has seen better days, repair any issues with it now – avoiding this could mean major damage to your tools and equipment.

Alternatively, move to San Diego.

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About Jen

Jen (but never “Jenn”) Byck, aka the Fix'n Vixen, is a Toronto-based freelance writer and communication consultant who is undoubtedly home fixated (she is also TV fixated, really bad TV fixated and donut fixated). Her approach to home improvement has been rather trial and error, the latter of which is evidenced by the amount of spackle she buys on an annual basis.

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