Spring Thaw: 10 Tips to get your home ready for warmer weather
There’s so much to look forward to when warm weather arrives; neighbors come out of hibernation, lawns turn green, winter coats and gloves get pushed to the back of the closet… there’s also a lot more work to be done around the house. All winter, we focus on staying indoors. But as soon as you draw back the curtains and open a window, you begin to notice all the work to be done.
Just like changing the oil in your car can help to keep it running smoothly, a little maintenance on your house will keep it in great shape through the spring and summer seasons. Here are our top 10 home maintenance tipsfor keeping your home in great shape in the months to come, saving you the trouble of costly repairs later in the year!
Spring Maintenance Tip #1: Inspect gutters & down spouts
Keeping your downspouts clear helps to prevent water damage to your home. Downspouts are connected to the gutters on your roof and are designed to carry rainwater to the ground and away from your roof, fascia, and foundation. Over time, leaves and sticks can collect in your gutters, and in Spring, when the Midwest typically sees a good amount of rain, that debris can become lodged in your downspouts. If don’t have screens installed over your gutters, scoop out debris and rinse clean with a high-pressure garden hose. If cleaning them doesn’t work, you likely have a clog. Click here for the 4 steps to clearing a clogged downspout.
Spring Maintenance Tip #2: Put a lid on it
The main drain line in your home connects the plumbing stack to the public sewer line. In older homes, these stacks were made of cast iron or galvanized steel, which can rust or corrode over time. Homes built after the 1970s have PVC pipe. PVC won’t corrode but it can clog. Tree roots can penetrate the line and cause backups, but most often a clogged main drain is due to a small animal nesting in the vent that covers the pipe. Our technicians have pulled birds and even rats out of clogged drains. To avoid this happening to you, cover your vent with a screen. Learn more here.
Spring Maintenance Tip #3: Look Up
The roof of a house is the first and best protector of everything inside. It also takes the most abuse from the outdoor elements. Once a year, you should have your roof inspected for missing, loose, or damaged shingles and potential leaks. Not a fan of heights? Our friends at Clayton Restorationhave got you covered!
Spring Maintenance Tip #4: Inspect doors and windows
Weather-stripping around your doors and windows keeps cold air out in winter, and hot air out in summer. Each fall, you should inspect the weather-stripping around your windows and doors. You’ll not only be more comfortable, but you could save money on your energy bills, too. Check out GreenSpace Constructionfor help in replacing your weather strips.
Spring Maintenance Tip #5: Get a trim
The rainy Spring season gives everything outdoors a boost in growth. Now that the grass is beginning to grow again, it’s time to pay attention to any trees around your home. If any branches are touching the house, or within a few feet of your roof and gutters, have them trimmed back. You should have at least two feet of clearance between your house and the nearest trees on your property.
Spring Maintenance Tip #6: Move the firewood
During the coldest months, building a fire is a nightly ritual. Your firewood pile diminished, but it also likely got a bit messy. If it’s close to the house so that you didn’t have to spend more time out in the cold than necessary, it’s time to move that pile away from the house, off the fence, etc. Do away with old firewood.
Spring Maintenance Tip #7: Give equipment a check up
Pull out your lawnmower, trimmer, edger, and any other lawn equipment in your home owner arsenal to make sure everything is in good working order for Spring. If you didn’t empty gas and oil last fall, you should do so now. And replace any extra gas or oil containers in your garage with fresh
Spring Maintenance Tip #8: Replace air filters
Every home’s furnace has an air filter. This filter should be replaced three to four times a year. If you haven’t done so, don’t worry. Just remember to change your furnace filter when you change your clocks in Spring and Fall (and the batteries in your smoke detector!). Most air filters are located in either the blower compartment of the furnace or built into the metal ductwork in front of the blower fan. As you remove the old filter, be sure to take note of the dimensions – this is usually printed on the cardboard frame. Also note the arrow on the filter frame that shows the correct air flow direction. YOu’ll need to install the new filter in the same direction as the old one.
Spring Maintenance Tip #9: Check for freeze damage
Check outside hose faucets for freeze damage. Turn your outdoor hose faucet on, placing your thumb or finger over the opening. If you can stop the flow of water, the pipe inside your home is likely damaged and will need to be replaced. Hook your hose up to ensure it’s still working well. Check for dry rot and holes or slits in the rubber.
Spring Maintenance Tip #10: Check vents and screens
Spring is a great time to clean out foundation vents and check screens for damage. Clean the vents by hand or a shop vacuum. Repair any damaged screens knowing that a rat can squeeze through a hole the size of a quarter, and mice can get inside a hole barely bigger than the diameter of a pencil!
For more than 30 years, St. Louis-area homeowners have trusted Maplewood Plumbing and Sewer to help keep their homes maintained through all four seasons. Our family-owned business prides itself on our solid reputation in the community. Need a hand with your Spring maintenance tasks? Give us a call at 314-300-0216 to see for yourself why our loyal customers won’t use anyone else!
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