Winter prep check list


Prevention is better than cure keep your house and vehicle etc properly maintained at all times.

House / Retreat

Winter fire wood obtained / cut / dried and accessible when snow has fallen

Coal / Oil stocks ordered? Delivered and stored properly

Gas bottles changed and empty ones refilled / replaced 

Gutters cleaned, drain traps cleared of debris

Fencing and posts checked for integrity and stability

Check security lights (Bulbs, Clean lenses, Clean PIRs)

Window seals checked (black and green algae scraped off seals / drain points) 

Boiler (furnace) serviced and certified

Set thermostat on heating to prevent freezing of system

Bleed Radiators

Doors /windows draught proofed

Drains free flowing and clear of debris

Locks and hinges oiled

Spare candles / flashlights / Chemical Light Sticks / lanterns etc,

Emergency heating kit checked

Snow shovel / ice scrapers to hand

Pre-salted sloping access roads / drives?

Spare fuses/ circuit breakers

Boarding up shuttering for broken windows set aside (with fittings)

Weather warning radio working and tuned in to local service

Sweep Chimney if you have wood / coal stove, check ventilation – drafting

Clean solar panels, check wiring / battery bank / specific gravity/ fluid levels.

Check and maintain external aerials TV / CB / Cell / Ham and cable connectors

Check & replace bottled gas regulator and hose if over 3 years old

Defrost and clean out freezers if heavily iced up

Clean, oil and maintain power tools like Chainsaws etc

Garden furniture brought in or covered up

*Check on neighbour’s well-being? *

Livestock / pets sorted out

Animal feedstock got in.

Greenhouses cleaned and disinfected, glass checked for integrity

Tools cleaned, disinfected, oiled and put away

Sheds / Garages/ Stores checked for weatherproofing and security

Personal / family

Extra food stocks got in case of snow / ice storm / whiteout

Rotate food stocks if necessary to ensure freshness

Prescription medicines got in if required by family members

Winter clothing got out of storage cleaned / aired and reproofed if necessary

Boots weatherproofed and cleaned

New script eye glasses obtained if necessary

Cans / foods rotated

Water filters cleaned / elements changed

Caches checked, updated etc

Bug out routes reccied

BOB’s checked and updated if necessary

Contact plans / pick up plans arranged for family members stranded by weather at school or work etc.

Personal security equipment cleaned / oil / checked etc


Get the latest Council winter road gritting map and plan your commute / BO routes accordingly

Check CB / Ham radio installation

Top up / change antifreeze

Tighten /adjust drive belts

Tyre condition /pressures

Jet wash underside, valet / polish bodywork

Check hoses for cracks, splits and tightness of hose clips

Lube locks

Change wiper blades (normally bi-annually)

Replace HL bulbs if over 5 years old (they have lost 20% of their brightness)

Check M & S tyres condition if still in store

Check your tyre chains

Fit thinner oil if you live in very northern climes.

Check battery condition and leads

Check demister / de-icer systems

Degrease windscreen inside and out

Radio set to accept weather and traffic news reports

Update Satnav data / Get new road map

Sleeping bag/ survival blanket

Chemical light sticks / flashlights/spare batteries

Candle/ matches

Snow dye

Survival kit


Snow mats

Short wave radio / batteries

Hot drink making kit

Vehicle Spares,

bulbs & fuses,






hose clips, 

hose repair kit, 

exhaust repair kit, 

cable ties & duct tape

snow chains / snow mat

wheel brace

spanners / sockets and screwdrivers


Tyre levers & tyre pump


  • Comments (8)

    • 4

      Thank you for the list Bill,

      I keep a pail of roofing tar for emergency repairs to the shingles if a bad storm. I also have a roof rake (a broad, slightly curved, rectangle head) with a long handle. It is meant for gently bring snow load down from the roof without damaging shingles or having to climb up a ladder. Also, in the trunk, kitty litter for traction.

      • 3

        Shingles, is that the oil cloth type covering commonly used on housing in the US, bit like stiff linoleum??

      • 5

        It’s the roofing shingles commonly made out of asphalt that we shingle our roofs with. I guess it could be construed to be a bit like stiff lino.

        I’m not sure what you use in the UK, but it’s very common here. The roofing tar is used to affix loose shingle in case of wind storm or around vents until roofers can come into replace the shingles.

      • 8

        Ok gotcha, In the UK we use either interlocking heavy concrete Roman type tiles, or slate tiles ( slate lasts hundreds if years, concrete about 100 years)  Above all fireproof or fire resistant

        We also use Thatched roofs still on a tiny number of homes, and in recent years stuff like interlocking Zinc sheeting or interlocking Copper sheeting,  and sometimes in flat roofs basically tar cloth then hot tar then grit.




      • 4

        Thanks for clarifying Bill. Those are some sturdy looking roofs.

    • 6

      Real good lists.

      Depending on the prepper, the US’ National Weather Service produces some weather emergency reports that are “information overload”for the private citizen.  We’re finishing an ice storm here and was getting both the detailed NWS reports and the area AM stations’ basic “ice storm for area and parts of … very cold, down to, stay off of roads unless…”

      Good: “Tools..,disinfect”.  The shovels kept INSIDE here are disinfected. Others in barn not important.

      Can only guess what “snow dye” is for. In truck are 2 vinyl shower curtins, one orange, one red. Both rigged with paracord.

      Some areas not appropriate to lube locks.  The lubercant freezes up.

      • 2

        You can use snow die or pottasium permanganate if your vehicle is stranded or you are stranded in deep snow to mark the snow bright orangy red to show rescuers your location. often used in conjunction with high intensity bright red light sticks when it gets dark.   I guess the same reason as your shower curtains 🙂

      • 3

        Yes, the snow dye same purpose as the shower curtins.

        Had guessed the dye was for distress area marking. In offshore oil industry work there were packets attached to work vests. The packets were orange dye if falling into water. Same principle.