How to store your winter gear


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Even though it doesn't seem like it, the first day of Spring is nearly here. Before you know it you'll be throwing off your winter coat and enjoying the warm weather. There are a few wintertime items that will soon need your attention — namely, your sweaters, boots and snow blower. Get these items stored away properly until the snow falls again — you’ll be glad you took the time to safeguard your valuables.

Sweaters and other winter clothes

Be sure to clean clothes before storing them, as oils and particles can stain if they aren’t treated, according to Crest Cleaners of Maryland and Virginia. Jackets are best put away in garment bags, while plastic containers are best for other clothing items. Cardboard boxes are too porous and may not keep out water or pests. Dry, cool areas are best to tuck the plastic bins out of sight, but be sure your basement is not likely to suffer from water damage. The temperature can fluctuate in the attic and garage too much to be safe for clothing, so a spare closet is your best bet.

Boots and other winter shoes

Again, it’s important to clean all the dirt off your shoes before you store them away for the season. With boots, Vogue recommends stuffing them with tissue paper (old magazines work, too!) to retain their shape. Shoe trees are also helpful. It’s important to store shoes in a dry place, so, again, go for plastic containers and try sliding them under your bed for safekeeping.

Snow blower

This is the one piece of winter equipment you won’t need to pull out until, well, it snows! J and J Small Engine of Massachusetts recommends draining the gas tank, changing the motor oil and replacing the spark plug, all before you tuck the machine away. Finally, grease the snow blower fittings and then cover the snow blower. Whether you store it in a garage or shed, make sure it is protected from the elements to prevent rust.