It's that time again! Spring is almost here, the days are longer and hibernation is almost over. As we get further into this new year, it's time to think about doing some home maintenance. No matter how sturdy your home is built, weather, sun and life take a toll on the structure of your house. Taking a few minutes before the beginning of summer can save you some heart ache and expensive problems down the road. (Disclosure: if you feel unprepared or unsafe doing any of these, hire someone!)
Here we'll highlight some of the important things to do during your spring cleaning. As always, these are suggestions; some may not apply and manufacturer recommendations always supersede ours! Check out this video of Will walking you through some of the basic maintenance.
A full list of suggestions can be downloaded below:
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First, daylight savings time is a great time to do a semi-annual checks on your fire, smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. You should confirm they are working by manually setting off the alarms. If they have batteries, confirm they are charged and if they are hard wired, make sure the alarms have power. The breaker that powers your alarms could have tripped, and you may not have realized it. Any chirping or flashing red is an indication that something is wrong.
Along those lines, clean out your dryer vents and exterior vent screens!! Make sure your dryer is free of any lint or obstruction. You don't want to have to actually use your smoke and fire alarms; keep your dryer lint-free!
Also indoors, this is a great time to do a quick visual inspection on caulking and grout around your tub, faucets and toilets. Just take a peek and make sure nothing is leaking and no caulking needs to be replaced. Check around the base of your toilets and under your cabinets where faucets may be dripping. It's better to catch leaks early.
If you need to replace caulk: silicone caulk is used in areas exposed to water like around your toilet or at the base of your backsplash. It can be picked up at any home store, but make sure you are replacing caulk with the appropriate type and always read and follow instructions on the caulking product.
Going outdoors, one very important thing in spring is to check the condition of your roof and gutters. We are heading into storm season, and you want to make sure your shingles are intact and water is draining appropriately. This includes making sure pop up drains in the yard are open and draining. You should clear any fallen leavens and debris from the valleys on your roof and gutters. Again, if you feel unsafe getting on your roof, hire a professional! Another great way to check your roof is to use a drone.
Also outdoors, be sure to trim any trees or shrubs that will touch your home once they start to grow this spring. It's best to do this before they start to bloom. You don't want any brush or limbs close to your home's exterior that could cause damage in a storm; even small shrubs can cause wear to the exterior of your home if they start to touch it.
This is also a good time of the year to complete the annual maintenance that should be done by a qualified professional. You should have your HVAC system maintenanced; cleaned, levels checked and tested before we get into the heat of summer. Always, always, always change your air filters. You can use subscription services like Filter Easy to take away the work of remembering. Also, tankless hot water heaters should be serviced by a plumber once a year. It's also a good idea to get your home professionally inspected for termites.
Once last thing: since we have had SO much rain this year, it's a great idea to take a peak at your crawlspace. Check for standing water, moisture or mold. Take care of these problems before it starts to negatively impact the health of your family or your home's structure.
We hope this was a good start on keeping your home performing optimally!