The twice per year equinoxes are when I think about tune-ups for the house and for the car. Sometimes thoughts about personal tune-ups come to mind, too.
The March Equinox signals the arrival of hotter weather. There will be different types of stresses on the mechanical features of the house, specifically the HVAC system. The air conditioning will be getting a lot of use after Spring arrives.
The same concerns are true for the car. In addition to the A/C, the main items are the engine, drive-train, and tires. After all, the harsh winter conditions have worked mischief on the car.
Now that the September Equinox has occurred, the HVAC will be of more importance than earlier in the year. This is because air conditioning is basically a luxury, but heating is a basic necessity. The last thing I want is to have a furnace malfunction happen in the middle of a cold snap or a blizzard.
Since the furnace is still relatively new, I do a visual examination of the burner and other working parts then change the air filter. Every couple of years, I have an HVAC technician give the unit a complete evaluation and going over. These check-ups and tune-ups provide reassurance that my basic comfort and home heating safety will continue.
The house, itself, is over 100-years-old. This means that the outside, around the foundation requires examination and caulking where necessary. This helps to keep mice from getting in. It’s also a way to spot any potential places where outside air can enter and inside air from escaping. To do this check, doesn’t require any special skills. Close observation skills and a good flashlight are the basic necessities.
Car concerns come to mind once again because the Summer heat and moisture cause their own types of deterioration and damage to motor vehicles–even those that are garaged. The car needs a good check-up to locate potential problems before the onset of our severe Nebraska Autumn and Winter.
I check the engine and accessory fluids along with doing an oil change. If there is mechanical wear or other questionable signs of problems, I schedule a going over by my favorite auto repair shop. After all, the car should be able to start and safely operate in very cold, hazardous conditions. I certainly don’t want to be stranded in the middle of nowhere, especially in winter.
Meantime, aside from regular visits to the doctor and dentist, I need to be more vigilant about myself. As I’ve aged, I’ve also become more lazy regarding exercise. I suppose this is normal human behavior. I realize that slacking off of regular workouts leads to a downwards health spiral. Of course, the process of aging also causes physical degeneration regardless of exercise routines.
Fortunately, there is more yard-work needed in the Autumn due to the great number of leaves that fall from the dozen or so elm trees in the yard. I rake the yard two or three times throughout the Fall in order to avoid one big struggle in November. Raking is good exercise.
The big concern is wintertime snowfall. Snow removal is fine exercise if done mindfully and carefully, with plenty of rest breaks. Meantime, weather forecasters are predicting above average snows this coming winter. This indicates that this year is also the time for a more complete personal tune-up and health plan. This might also be the year to finally buy a snowblower, for health’s sake.
All of these tune-ups are waiting to happen. It’s time to get started.