November Home Maintenance To-Do List

Danny Lipford lubricating a door lock.

With cold weather and the holidays fast approaching, this month’s to-do list focuses on some of the less obvious, but very important, indoor cleaning and repair tasks to get your home in tip-top shape for holiday guests.

From cleaning your garbage disposal and faucet aerators to fixing squeaky door hinges and sticky locks, our November home to-do list covers the bases without breaking your back or budget. Most of these chores are quick and easy; and, best of all, they take few materials or tools.

So set aside an afternoon in November to knock out this home maintenance to-do list, then sit back and enjoy a cup of hot cider!

Water running over a garbage disposal
Pour boiling water down a garbage disposal to clean it. (DepositPhotos)

To-Do #1: Clean Garbage Disposal

Before hosting a big Thanksgiving party, take a few minutes to clean and freshen up your garbage disposal first. This chore couldn’t be easier, here’s how.

To Clean a Garbage Disposal:

  • Pour 1/2 cup baking soda into the disposal.
  • Follow it with a cup of white vinegar. The vinegar and baking soda will react to form frothy bubbles.
  • When the bubbles subside, pour a pot of boiling water down the disposal and let it sit for about five minutes.
  • Turn on the water in the sink and the disposal, and let it run until the disposal is rinsed out.

To keep your disposal smelling fresh, put some leftover chunks of lemon in an ice cube tray, cover them with water, and freeze. Whenever your garbage disposal gets a bit funky, run a few “lemon cubes” through the disposal for a quick freshen-up.

The ice chunks will scour the blades and scrape away stuck-on debris inside the disposal!

Watch our video on How to Clean a Garbage Disposal to find out more.

Woman unscrewing a faucet aerator.
So many homeowners forget to clean out their faucet aerators. Do you? (DepositPhotos)

To-Do #2: Clean Sink Faucet Aerators

Clogged sink aerators can cause reduced water flow or an unevenly spray when you turn on bathroom or kitchen faucets. This is another easy task using white vinegar, and the hard work is done while you’re sleeping!

To clean a faucet aerator:

  • Unscrew the aerator from the end of the faucet.
  • Drop the aerator in a bowl of white vinegar.
  • Let the aerator sit overnight.
  • The next day, rinse the vinegar off the aerator.
  • Screw the aerator back on the faucet, and you’re done!

Watch our video on Cleaning a Faucet Aerator to find out more.


  1. Love your show and website!!

    Please see what you can do about fixing the website, so that when you select a video, it doesn’t take you back to the first set of videos to select.

    Keep up the great work. I’ve actually taken care of somethings around the house on my own.

    Sara in Abilene

  2. Have you ever seen a squirrel eat wood framing on a home? I have one eating the decorative trim around my front door near the entrance. I filled in the hole he chewed last year but he’s returned again this year to eat the same area again. We’ve tried pepper sprays and preparations put on the wood. Help! Why is he eating the wood?

  3. I’ve used this for unclogging the disposal when necessary, but never thought of refreshing or cleaning it with this method. Thanks

  4. This is actually a really good list! Very helpful, thank you. I always have done an old school trick I learned from my mother, which is put half a lemon in the garbage disposal and turn it on. It makes it smell great the whole day:).

  5. Love your show, it comes on in our area (Huntsville) VERY early but I do wake to see it every Saturday morning. Your knowledge and experience, and your very educational way to remedy problems around the home are very useful and believe me, we use them a LOT!! You give homeowners great and useful education, and the courage to tackle what they can and the knowledge to hire a professional if they cant! Would that we all be so handy or as in your daughter’s case, creative. Many good ideas from your daughter on decorating as well!!

  6. The tip about using dry graphite in a lock set is a great one. A lot of people use the good old spray lubricant, not knowing that it gums up any existing dust/dirt already in the lock thus making it more difficult over time to turn the key.

  7. In our Kitchen Sink Faucet the aerator is broken off in the spout. It is broken off even with spout and I can’t seem to get it out with pliers, etc.
    Can you give me a tip on how to get it out. I am going to replace it with
    a new one.


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