Spring Maintenance Saves You Money
- Apr, 10 2022
Why spring maintenance is important to your home and can save you money over time.
All the components of your home are slowly failing. From the day they were installed they began the slow breakdown that leads to failure at some point in the future. Your roof, siding, windows, floors, HVAC, electrical systems, appliances, you name it in your home and it is working toward failure. Obviously, some things fail sooner than others but make no mistake everything is slowly failing.
So what do you do about it? Well, one of the most important things you can do is perform maintenance to your home and its systems to help extend their useful life. With proper upkeep, most items in and around the home will last much longer than those that are neglected. I have put together a brief summary of some important items and systems to make sure maintenance is performed on this spring. Some of these are easy homeowner jobs and others should have a professional do the work. If you’re not sure hire a pro the first year, if it looks easy enough then next year you can try it.
- Clean out your gutters.
- This one is a huge one that is largely overlooked far too often. Clogged gutters can lead to gutters pulling away from the fascia, rotted fascia and soffits, and over time improper drainage that can lead to foundation issues. There are lots of tools out there to help with this task to make it safe. Hire a handyman or roofer if you can’t clean them from the ground.
- Inspect your roof.
- This one can be dangerous so if you are not confident on a ladder and at heights don’t attempt this one hire a pro. You should be looking for loose or missing shingles, deteriorated sealant, hail damage, exposed nails, or other signs of damage that could lead to a leak. If you find something out of place contact a roofing professional to get it repaired right. You should also remove any vegetation, or build-up on your roof. These can lead to premature failure of the roofing system and cost you big money sooner than it should.
- Seal the exterior walls/siding.
- One of the most common defects I write up on the exterior is holes in the siding that are not properly sealed. Depending on the siding this can lead to all sorts of issues from insect intrusion, to rot, to mold. Take a little time, walk around the exterior and seal up and penetrations or holes in the siding. Don’t forget to seal around doors and windows if necessary (not all siding types require this).
- Clean out dryer vents.
- Check your dryer vent for lint build-up and clean it out. This will help with your dryer efficiencies as well as reduce any fire risk from a clogged line.
- Clean your windows and screens.
- This will help you catch small issues like screen tears before they become bigger. It’s also nice to be able to see out a clean window.
- Have your Air Conditioner serviced
- This is one that you should have a professional do. They will have the right tools and knowledge to get your system serviced correctly. If you schedule this now, you won’t get caught in August when temps are in the triple digits and not having AC will make you miserable. Not having your AC system serviced annually will shorten its lifespan and end up costing you big in the long run.
- Wash and stain your fence.
- Keeping your wood fence clean and stained will greatly extend its life. No one wants to build a new fence or pay to have a new one installed. So take a weekend and get your fence cleaned and stained/sealed and it will last you a long long time. Neglect your fence and you will get to fork out a heck of a lot more money to have it replaced. This is a great job for a handyman or maybe the kid next door too.
- Perform yard maintenance.
- Get out there and get your grass ready for summer. Aerate, rake, mow, fertilize, and just get ahead of the game. There are tons of great blogs and youtube videos out there on what you can do to improve your yard but starting early will help a bunch.
- Trim back vegetation from the house exterior. You should have any vegetation touching or within one foot of the home. When vegetation touches the siding it can cause damage, decay, and invite pests into the home. Get all of your shrubs, bushes, and trees trimmed back away from your house in the spring to help prevent issues the rest of the year.
- Check your sprinkler system while you’re out there. It might a bit early to start watering as the spring showers will hopefully provide enough moisture for the next couple of months but you can get the system ready. Don’t wait until it is hot and dry to turn your sprinklers on to find out something is wrong and watch your grass die as you try to get it fixed.
- Check your sump pump if you have one.
- Sump pumps keep your crawlspace or basement from flooding. In some instances, they help remove water from around the foundation to prevent settlement issues. These are all very important and yet I rarely see sump pumps that have been serviced. I recommend having a plumber come to test and clean your sump pump in the spring to make sure it going to work properly. If you have a significant issue with water I also recommend having a backup unit on hand. I have seen far too many times during a wet spring when all the local stores run out of pumps and people are left with a big mess and big bills because their pump failed.
- Change your smoke detector batteries.
- If you don’t know the last time you changed your batteries go ahead and get them changed now and note it on the detector with a sticker. Then make sure to change them annually and test your detectors monthly. Some of the newer detectors have a sealed 10-year battery and don’t need to be changed every year. Make sure to check which kind you have.
All of these tasks can seem overwhelming but if you start now and tackle them one by one you will be ready to have a great summer enjoying your home. And don’t worry there will be a list of maintenance items for summer as well.