Check Out These Six Easy Home Repair Jobs to Beat Those Winter Blues

Tools laying on a hardwood floor from left to right you see a level, saw, paintbrush, wooden house cutout, screwdriver and measuring tape

There’s just no denying that this post-holiday, frigid, and dismal period during the first quarter of the year is a drag. The lack of natural sunlight can cause a condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and result in depression, the weather is often unrelenting, and the news is pretty dreary in general. One of the best ways to clear away the winter blues is to get busy, and there’s no better way than to choose a few moderate home repair jobs and fix up your place. There are plenty of home repair and renovation jobs that an amateur can tackle, not to mention a wealth of DIY videos on just about any home repair subject. Here are six home repair jobs you can either tackle yourself or assign to family members during the early months of the year.

6. Oil Hinges

Oil being applied to a door hingeWe all have squeaky doors and cabinets somewhere in our house, and it’s one of those things you always mean to get around to, but don’t find the time. Grab a small can of oil or pick up some WD40 at the hardware store to get started. Add a drop or two of lubricant inside the hinge, or lightly spray with WD40. Oil and chemicals can be hazardous to pets or small children, so be sure to store it safely.

5. Fix Squeaky Floors

Talcum powder being sprinkled on a hardwood floorHardwood floors are infamous for bending and warping, which can cause a squeaky step from time to time even in the best-constructed houses. This is an easy fix, though. Just sprinkle a little talcum powder over the spot, and then use a small broom or a dry paintbrush to sweep it along the edges of the beam. Also, if you find any loose screws in the construction, tighten them down with a screwdriver.

4. Upgrade Your Light Bulbs

Person changing a light bulb and twists it until it turns onWe’re all inside a lot more during the winter, so it’s a good time to make sure your indoor lighting is bright and energy efficient. Upgrade from incandescent bulbs to more energy-efficient bulbs. Choosing the right money-saving LED bulbs is a great investment that can save you a lot of money over the course of the bulbs’ long lifetime.

3. Tighten Up Loose Handles and Hinges

Person using a screwdriver to tighten up a doors loose handles and hingesMost handles and hinges grow less firm over time but they can easily be fixed with the turn of a screwdriver. You would be surprised how fixing a small annoyance can make life just a little easier. If you find a screw is stripped, extract it with a vise-grip or extraction kit then switch to a larger screw to make the handle or hinge tighter.

2. Repair the Paint on Your Shower Ceiling

Person using a paintbrush to repair the shower ceilingShowers and bathtubs generate a surprising amount of heat and moisture, which can stress or blister painted areas on the ceiling directly above these fixtures. It’s worth the time and effort to occasionally scrape down the old paint and recoat the ceiling using a high-quality, moisture-resistant paint. Reminding family members to use the bathroom vent when bathing or showering can also help dispel excess moisture.

1. Replace Batteries in All Carbon Monoxide and Smoke Detectors

Person replacing batteries in a carbon monoxide/smoke detectorThis is more than a simple home repair job; it might just save your life someday. House fires and carbon monoxide exposure can be a serious danger to you and your family. Luckily, nearly every type of smoke detector makes a chirping sound when it’s time to change the battery. However, the common advice to avoid that nuisance is to replace your batteries twice a year.