Fall Back and Inspect

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Daylight Savings Time officially ends Sunday, November 1, at 2:00 a.m. It’s also called Fall Back as opposed to Spring Forward that happens in March. We lose one hour of daylight as nature prepares to enter winter and a time of dormancy.

Some states and U.S. territories choose not to participate: Arizona, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and American Samoa. But since we live in Kansas, we need to be prepared to lose the hour of daylight.

Listed below are five inspections to do, based on www.thesilverlining.com.

  1. Inspect smoke and carbon monoxide alarms.

While these systems need little maintenance, the shreaking sound of a battery’s life running out could cause you to lose a few years or your heart to skip a few beats. Use this time of year to replace the batteries and clean out the cobwebs and dust bunnies from these life-saving detectors.

  1. Inspect heat-producing items such as the fireplace and furnace.

A professional inspection will help to identify potential defects as well as creosote buildup in your fireplace. Creosote is a black residue that travels up the chimney and builds up on the flue every time you light a fire. This type of fire is extremely dangerous because it can spread quickly.

Have your furnace inspected also. If your air conditioner doesn’t run through the furnace, this is a great time to have the equipment inspected for any leaks, cracks, or defects. It’s also a good time to replace the filters and restock for the upcoming colder weather.

  1. Inspect car’s tires.

Cold temperatures can cause your tires to lose air pressure, more than one pound per month. Driving with underinflated tires can cause damage to your car and decrease vehicle handling. In good weather you might not notice a difference, but given a heavy snowfall, you will experience more challenge with under-inflated tires.

  1. Inspect car’s headlights.

With fewer hours of daylight, you will use your car’s lights more. Usage is good to see and be seen. Some cars have running lights that stay on all of the time, but for those of us without automatic lights, it’s a great time of year to have your headlights checked. Be sure the bulbs are bright and that the headlight lens is clear. If the lens is cloudy, you can clean them yourself or take the car to the dealer to have it professionally cleaned.

  1. Inspect interior and exterior house lights.

Again, less daylight hours mean more usage of interior and exterior lights. We know to change bulbs when they blow out, but having a regular time of year to check and replace the bulbs will help establish a routine. Be sure to replace all of the bulbs to LED type. These light-emitting diode bulbs have a rated life of up to 50,000 hours. This is 50 times longer than a typical incandescent, 20-25 times longer than a typical halogen, and 8-10 times longer than a typical CFL. Used 8 hours a day, a 50,000 bulb will last more than 17 years. Once you replace the bulbs, you won’t have to replace often, but you might want to keep a pack of bulbs on hand for newly purchased lamps, appliances and exterior lights.

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