Check Outdoor Walking Surfaces Before Winter

 There are many things that homeowners should check and maintain before Winter comes calling.  Everything from weatherstripping to storm windows.

The one thing some homeowners neglect to do is check all the walking surfaces outdoors to prevent accidents. 

The most common cause of accidents around your home are the dangers lurking outdoors.  Icy sidewalks, cracked concrete, tree roots, and branches.

Examine your concrete sidewalks and walkways

Cracks in your sidewalk or walkways can cause major tripping hazards.  Womens heels can get stuck in them as well as smaller childrens shoes.

  • Check for small or medium cracks
    • For a crack in concrete that is less than 1/2″ wide, you can patch with concrete grout
    • Clean the crack and the area around it and remove dirt and debris
    • Place a little bit of water inside the crack
    • Apply concrete grout until you fill the crack to just above the surface
  • Check for large cracks
    • Cracks larger than 1″ need concrete patching compound
    • Prepare the area as noted above for small or medium cracks
    • Mix the patching compound per directions
    • Add a bit of water to the crack
    • Use a trowel to apply the compound to the cracks until filled
  • If you have a “break” in the concrete, such as a hole larger than 6″ or so, you should call in a professional.

Check your Ditches

If you have any ditches in your front or back yard, make sure they are properly covered.  If there are leaves that have filled them in, remove and dispose of them.  A ditch filled with leaves can be very deceiving to a child and can pose a risk of them falling in.

Check your lawn for Tree Roots

You want to check your lawn for protruding tree roots.  If you had a particularly dry spring and summer, chances are these roots have started to protrude. If you find any, you should:

  • Use an axe or hatchet to cut them down so they’re level with the ground.
  • Check with a nursery or professional before cutting into roots too much.  You want to keep from damaging the tree they belong to

Check Lawn for other Debris

  • Pick up rocks, branches, and any other debris that is laying around 
  • Make sure you pick up any yard waste and dispose of it properly. 

Put up Buckets and Containers

If you have any buckets outdoors, like those that you use to wash your cars.  These containers can collect water and be a danger to children. 

Making sure you have clutter free walking surfaces is very important most of the year, but especially during the winter.  Check around your home and you might be surprised at what you find!

For more tips for around your home, please visit the Lawn & Garden section of our website!

Do you have any Outdoor Tips to add?

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