'SNOW’ MORE DAMAGE: EXTERIOR HOME MAINTENANCE TIPS FOR THE TRANSITION TO SPRING
Harsh winter weather can take a toll on a house – especially outside. Here’s how to prepare for warmer days ahead.
Snow is melting, temps are rising, and grass is growing (though the ground still may freeze from time to time). In locales that experience the four seasons, these are a few tell-tale signs that spring is almost here.
For homeowners, seasonal change comes with care and keeping – inside and out – to maintain the property and repair damage.
With spring just days away, consider these maintenance tips and inspection reminders to help prepare the home for a change in weather.
Clean out gutters
Leaves from the fall, debris from winter storms and general grime (and pests) can easily clog gutters, preventing proper drainage. And with spring showers on their way, it’s important to ensure water has an unobstructed path away from the house, keeping the home’s roof, structure, and foundation dry and mold-free. Depending on your comfort level using a ladder, consider hiring a professional to do a safe and thorough cleaning job.
Complete a roof check-up
See any sagging spots on your roof? Or, notice any leaks from the inside of the house? With snow persistently falling and melting over the course of the winter, the roof could be subject to leaking. Locate any of these issues now and make a plan for repair before the rainy season begins.
Remove debris that may have piled up (think: twigs and pine needles) and, if this applies to your home, make sure you’re not missing any shingles. Like with the gutters, consider hiring a professional – and schedule a routine inspection while you’re at it! – if accessing the roof is difficult or unsafe.
Inspect the sprinkler system
Dead grass will be parched come springtime, so if you’re looking to have a luscious lawn, it’s time to check in on the sprinkler system. Check for damage to sprinkler heads as broken equipment can lead to patchy lawn watering and dry spots. It’s important to note that prepping a sprinkler system for warm weather should happen when there’s likely no more snow or frost in the forecast.
Prep windows for A.C.
Identify drafty windows now to ensure you have enough time to repair them before the first heat wave of the season calls for air-conditioning. A deep cleaning of a window’s frame and hinges can prevent pileup from obstructing its ability to open and close smoothly. For leaks, consider applying caulk around the window to reseal it. By functioning properly and containing cool air, windows can help save money on A.C. costs.
While you’re at it, take this time to change the air filter to optimize the efficiency of your HVAC system and improve air quality inside the home.
Wash outdoor furniture
If you have patio furniture, it likely got covered for the winter or stored away. Take the time to wipe down each piece and make sure nothing is broken. The grill could use some TLC as well – scrape, deep clean and degrease the interior, scrub the grates, and refill the propane fuel tank in preparation for future BBQs.
Audit the outside
There are many other components to exterior maintenance that are specific to each individual home. Walk around your property and take note of any tasks you can get ahead on or appointments with professionals you need to schedule. Planning ahead for services like mulch delivery, air-conditioning unit installation, lawn aerating and more can alleviate stress when spring finally arrives.