smart homeowners will do a couple of chores pre-blizzard to keep their houses protected. (Toni L. Sandys/The Washington Post)

UPDATED, march 13, 2017: We released this checklist in 2016, but the chores still use for the upcoming storm.

The poor news is a blizzard is top smack in ~ us. The great news is that homeowners still have time come prepare. For this reason what do the house pros execute to gain themselves all set for the icy blast as soon as a significant storm is forecast?

Bob Martinisko, that owns small Job Bob handyman business in north Virginia and has been in the construction organization for an ext than 20 years, is heeding the forecasts. He reluctantly canceled his duck hunting trip to the eastern Shore and is shopping because that de-icing salt and an ext sand because that his Clifton home.

In bespeak to defend your home, Martinisko suggests doing these six chores prior to the flakes begin to fall.

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share up top top de-icing salt and sand. placed a tiny salt down on her front walk and also sidewalks a pair of hours before it start snowing. This is what the road crews do to get a run on a storm. When it starts to snow, the salt will certainly activate and start to melt it. Have actually sand handy because that after the storm so you have the right to sprinkle job of ice or crusty snow. Constantly store sand indoors, as the humidity in the can reason it to freeze, Martinisko says. Only use rough circuit sand; pat sand isn’t great for something besides playing in.

Pull the end your snow blower. Fire up that eye blower and make sure it works. If you have time, take into consideration getting part extra components for it, such as shear pins, bolts or clips, for this reason you have them ~ above hand if something need to break and also you can’t obtain out come the hardware or big box store. Put the blower by the an initial point of exit out of the house and cover that up with a tarp for this reason you deserve to easily access it when you desire to start tackling the snowfall. To buy extra gas, together you might be blowing eye for a if if forecasters space correct.

Check your gutters. hopefully you had your gutters cleaned when the critical of the autumn leaves come down. If not, call and also beg your gutter cleaner come come right now. At least clear the end the heap of leaves at the bottom of her downspouts so the the melting eye can drainpipe out to prevent ice damming. Additionally clean out your basement stairway drain.

Get ready for the large meltdown. Test your sump pump through dumping 5 gallons that water roughly it to view whether it activates. Install plastic window well consists or at the very least put up plastic through tape on optimal of her wells to try and save the melt water indigenous seeping into your basement windows.

Store water. If the strength goes out and you need force to flush her toilet, you’ll desire to have water stockpiled. Buy three or 4 five-gallon buckets with lids, fill them, and also keep them in her basement. If girlfriend can’t get out come buy the buckets, fill her bathtubs. Or perform both.

Prepare your snow shovel.

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prior to you start clearing snow, spray the top of her shovel with nonstick food preparation spray. Climate the snow will slide appropriate off of it once you throw it to the side. No sticking. Martinisko, who is tall, likes an aluminum shovel v slightly increased sides and a long handle.