Halloween is just around the corner, and you can’t wait to carve pumpkins and hand out candy to delightful
ghosts and vampires.
But what’s this?
Your house already looks like it fell out of a classic horror film: broken windows, flickering lights, and
missing shingles. Although the look certainly suits the season, you don’t want to scare potential visitors
If you want to invite happy haunters to your home, make sure you complete the following improvement
projects before All Hallows’ Eve.
1. Repair Cracked Windows
Broken glass poses a hazard to you, your family, and your guests. Furthermore, even the tiniest cracks
allow air to flow from your home, which means your heating and cooling system has to work harder to maintain
a comfortable temperature.
Hire a professional to replace any cracked panes or swap out old windows entirely. If you want to save on
your utilities every month, don’t forget to ask about energy-efficient window selections.
2. Oil Squeaky Doors
Do your doors creak and groan whenever you open them? Wear, tear, and settling may be the culprit.
Fortunately, you can usually fix a squeak with minimal effort. Simply tap a nail at the bottom of the hinge
to push the hinge pin up and out. Then lightly lubricate the pin with petroleum jelly and dab a little into
the pin slot. Replace the hinge pin, pull out the nail, and wipe off excess lubricant.
Have a different door problem? Perhaps your door mysteriously closes on its own, or you have a door that
sticks whenever you open it. In these cases, talk to a contractor about repairs or replacement options.
3. Wash Dirty Siding
Dirt, dust, and other debris build up on your siding and age your home’s appearance by several years. To
make your siding look like new again, use your garden hose to rinse away the outer layer of muck. For more
stubborn stains, dampen a wrap or soft-bristled brush with warm soap water and wipe each panel, starting from
bottom to top (to minimize streaking). Rinse often.
As you clean your siding, look out for dented vinyl or cracked wooden panels, since these tell-tale signs
allow water and condensation to collect inside your home. Have an expert replace these damaged sections as
4. Inspect for Faulty Wiring
Flickering lights not only look spooky-they also pose a safety hazard. When you frequently notice multiple
lights flicker at the same time, you can usually blame power arcing. Power arcing occurs when wire
connections sit close to each enough to each other that they generate an electrical current.But arcing also
creates heat, which increases the likelihood of a fire.
Talk to an electrician as soon as you notice multiple lights flickering at once. He or she will pinpoint
and fix the problem, as well as point out other electrical hazards such as a failing switch or abnormal power
5. Replace Missing Shingles
If an early autumn storm ripped out a few of your shingles, don’t wait until you see the next dark cloud
to replace them. The longer your roof stays exposed to sun and bad weather, the greater the likelihood of
mold growth, rot, and leaks.
Fortunately, you can replace and refasten asphalt shingles with the right tools. To start, use a
screwdriver to take off shingles directly above the missing patch. Then position the replacement shingle onto
the bottom row so it overlaps the one directly beneath it. Make sure your shingle aligns with those on either
side before hammering it into place with a galvanized roofing nail.
Apply a little roofing cement to the nail hole, and then repeat the entire process. When you reach the
last shingle, use a utility knife to remove the nail strip, apply roofing cement to the underside of the
shingle, and then carefully place the shingle beneath the shingles on the row above.
If you don’t feel comfortable making the repairs yourself, feel free to hire a roofing contractor to do
the job for you.
Once you’ve made these five repairs, go wild with your Halloween decorations and enjoy a spooky good time.