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BEACON Senior News - Western Colorado

7 tips on prepping for seasonal equipment changes

Nov 29, 2022 10:57AM ● By Debbie Mayster

After your lawn gets its last seasonal cut, it’s time to put away your summer power equipment and prepare for winter. But how and when you do so can save you time and money, suggests Kris Kiser, president and CEO of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI).

“Over the last few years, we’ve learned our outdoor spaces are more important than ever so making sure you’ve got the means to care for your yard is critical,” said Kiser. “Preparation is everything—understanding how to store equipment and get it serviced, how to operate it safely and how to ready your space to use that equipment.”

Here are a few tips to ensure proper equipment storage, maintenance and safe handling:

1. Review the owner’s manual. 

Know how to handle equipment safely including operation and shut-down procedures. If you’ve lose the manual, search for it online. Save a copy on your computer, so it can be consulted when needed.

2. Service all equipment. 

Before storing spring and summer equipment, drain and change engine oil, service the air filter and do other maintenance as directed by the owner’s manual. Take it to a small engine repair shop if you do not wish to service it yourself. Also, check your winter equipment to see if any maintenance and repairs are required.

3. Handle fuel properly. 

Unused fuel left in tanks over the winter can go stale and even damage equipment. Before storing, add fuel stabilizer to the tank, then run the equipment to distribute it. Turn the engine off, allow the machine to cool then restart and run until the tank is empty. For winter equipment, buy the recommended type of fuel no more than 30 days before use. Use fuel with no more than 10% ethanol in outdoor power equipment.

4. Charge batteries. 

Remove and fully charge batteries before storing. Don’t store batteries on metal shelves or allow them to touch metal objects. Store them on plastic or wood shelves in a climate-controlled area.

5. Shelter equipment from winter weather. 

Store spring and summer equipment in a clean and dry place such as a garage, barn or shed. Winter equipment should be kept away from the elements, but be easily available for use.

6. Prepare, prepare, prepare.  

Make space to store larger yard items before the weather changes. Clean up your yard by removing sticks, debris, toys and other items that can damage or destroy equipment. 

7. Use generators with care.  

Never operate a generator indoors, in a garage, breezeway or under an open window. Install a carbon monoxide detector in your home and keep extra-long, heavy-duty weatherproof extension cords on hand to maintain a safe distance from the house or building.

Quick repair projects to prep your home for winter

Quick repair projects to prep your home for winter

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