With fall's transition between the seasons comes a transition for your home as well. That roof and those four sturdy walls need to protect you from winter's fury, and there are several things you can do to help get ready. 1. Seal masonry surfaces: Apply a sealer to concrete driveways and walkways, brick patios and other exterior masonry. The sealer, available from paint stores and masonry supply retailers, prevents water from penetrating into cracks and crevices where it can freeze and cause serious damage. 2. Prepare your fireplace: Now is the time to get wood-burning appliances such as fireplaces and woodstoves ready for the season. Remove ash buildup; check screens and glass doors for damage; replace door gaskets as needed; and check doors, door latches, screen brackets, and other metal parts to be sure they are secure and operating properly. Check the condition of the exterior of the chimney or flue pipe, including the cap, and then clean the chimney to remove last se...
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