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Old 09.09.2020, 14:46
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Re: Maintaining small house & living in the lower mountains questions

Here's our checklist for every autumn, again granted that we're at 1100m.
  1. Clear out all water drains and gutters
  2. Restain all timber garden furniture and cover them up
  3. Cover up the concrete garden fireplaces
  4. Tie up all the younger trees where snow weight could snap their branches
  5. Service all the garden tools
  6. Put mulch layers over all the vegetable beds
  7. Move all the potted plants into the greenhouse with its heater on lowest setting and winter's worth of water in the tank that we can access easily
  8. Purchase and store close to the house, a winter's worth of firewood
  9. Drain the motorbikes of fuel and store them on cardboard rather than just the concrete garage floors
  10. Regrout any gaps in the stone stairs/pavers
  11. Relocate a large compost bin for winter foodscraps close to the house
  12. Service the snow clearing machine and store it at the front of the garage doors
  13. Move all our snow clearing shovels, gloves, hats etc right by all doors
  14. Check the heaters and extension cords that get used in the cars
  15. Bleed the garden hoses and let them dry out before storage in the shed
  16. Ensure every painted exterior surface of the house is repaired
  17. Ensure pantry has all the basics for at least a couple of weeks (bad storms resulting in fallen trees have blocked our road historically for days)
  18. Check the garden shed roof and house roof shingles are all in good order
  19. Relocate the BBQ's under the eaves for easy access (love a winter grill!)

Very simply, we might not see our grass or driveway clear of snow for 4-5 months. And its a chore to have to keep clearing access routes through the snow, so we stock up on supplies, keep everything else required close to the exterior doors, or super easy to unload from the car to the house, and then hunker down!

Extreme cold is an enemy of any part of your exterior house that is not in good repair - and you don't want to be trying to patch roofs or fix anything outside in minus degrees with a biting wind!

We had our timber house painted 7 years ago, with an assurance it would last for 10 years before needing to be redone. We've just had to strip back to bare timber and repaint all of the shutters, and really we should have redone them last year - they were showing signs of weather wear much earlier than expected. We are also well past repainting the cladded walls - they are looking very thirsty. And we're in the process of fixing all the rendered concrete walls - they are cracking badly. So either we didn't get the best contractor or paint type with the promise of 10 years, or our weather conditions have been more extreme than usual.....Our slate clad roof however has been on for 45 years and is still looking good, and all our copper drainpipes and copper chimney stack & hood are holding up perfectly. We painted the garden shed ourselves 8 years ago, and it still looks perfect. And happily, our bathroom pipes no longer freeze up every winter, after we went crazy with quadruple insulation in those walls!

Last edited by smileygreebins; 09.09.2020 at 15:00.
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