October 16, 2018 10:59am

hurch calendars mark religious seasons and remind leaders and worshippers when it is time to transition to the next spiritual season. Your church should also have a maintenance calendar. As Northeast Ohio’s fall weather season approaches peak colors, hardy residents know that winter white is coming soon in the form of SNOW. Now is the time for preparation and preventive maintenance. Add some seasonal spice to your church calendar and call on volunteers to fulfill five, fun, fall commandments for maintaining the church property.

Lift your heads:  Do you see towering trees such as oaks, maples, buckeyes, horse chestnuts, or pines?  These common, tall varieties in Northeast Ohio shed large leaves or needles that may clog gutters and outdoor drains. Their respective fruits in the form of acorns, pods, buckeyes, horse chestnuts, and cones, are nature’s design, but very pesky for maintaining building and grounds. All of this stuff, plus sticks and broken limbs, can quickly wreak havoc, if not fully removed from gutters, roofs, and drains.

Climb a ladder:   Using proper safety precautions and guidelines, someone has to get up on a ladder to clean the gutters and survey the roof for damaged, curled, or missing shingles. Flat roofs should be inspected for wear, punctures, sagging, or anything that will compromise the integrity of the roof. Brush off any debris. Algae or other growth should be removed. Consider your local hardware provider for product recommendations. Check for damage to flashing around vents and chimneys and make appropriate repairs. Be on the lookout for big cracks or missing mortar and/or bricks seen from the ladder as well as seen at ground level. Schedule a mason to review questionable areas. 

Open your eyes:  Survey sidewalks and parking lots for shifts, cracks, and potholes that can be repaired or filled before winter’s freeze-and-thaw cycles cause further, more expensive deterioration. Regular attention to surface maintenance has the potential to preempt some slip and fall claims.

Lend a hand:  Outdoor faucets and sprinkler systems must be drained, prepped, and insulated to prevent damage due to freezing. Drain hoses and stow them inside.    

Heat the inn:   Be prepared to welcome members and guests to a warm and cozy church throughout a long and sometimes weary winter. Make sure to change furnace filters and consider a professional inspection and cleaning of your furnaces/boilers. Routine maintenance extends furnace/boiler life and may prevent costly repairs due to neglect.

Mark your calendars to contact your Trusted Choice Independent Insurance Agent at Richey-Barrett Insurance to fulfill your church’s insurance needs.


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