Apr 28, 2015

We’ve talked about cleaning, we’ve talked about organizing, and now it’s time for the final installment in our spring cleaning blog series: home maintenance. For many households, early spring is a time devoted to getting your home in shape. While you’re giving overlooked areas a good scrubbing and organizing as part of your spring cleaning chores, take some time to complete a little basic home maintenance. It’s the perfect opportunity to address anything that may have happened to your home during the colder months, and prepare it for the warmer ones. We’ve compiled a list of home maintenance tasks you should consider as part of your spring cleaning. Check it out below.

Gutters – Although the saying is “April showers bring May flowers”, we tend to see a lot of rain throughout the spring and summer. To help combat the adverse affects extensive showers and moisture can have on your home, it’s important to make sure that your gutters (or eavestroughs) are clear of debris. Over the course of the year, leaves, dirt, and litter can collect in your gutters. If you don’t clean them out, the water from rain and melting snow can get trapped, and instead of being directed away from your roof, will instead spill onto it, damaging your shingles and potentially seeping into your attic.

Image via This Old House

Roof – Your roof can take a beating during the winter (this harsh season is usually toughest on roofs). The freeze/thaw cycle we experience towards the end of winter can be especially damaging. Once it’s warm enough and the snow has melted, inspect your roof (either safely on a ladder or on the ground using binoculars). Look to see whether you have any broken or worn shingles.

Image via This Old House

Should you have any damaged shingles, get in touch with a roofing specialist (if you don't know one, check out a referral based website, like Angie’s List or HomeStars, where you can find local, recommended, experts) and have them repaired immediately. These can serve as an entry point for water, so you want them fixed as soon as possible.

Furnace/AC – Throughout the year your furnace and air conditioner will see a lot of use. Although these are complex systems, even the most basic maintenance can help keep them working efficiently and improve their lifespan. Once a month you should check your furnace and air conditioner filter to see if it needs to be cleaned or replaced. If the filter full of dust and debris that means your furnace or air conditioner has to work harder to cycle the air it’s either heating or cooling. A clean filter makes this process more efficient.

Some filters are reusable; some are not. If your filter is not reusable and you need to get a replacement filter, measure your filter BEFORE buying a new one (trust us!).

Grading – As you start working on your flower beds, check to see which way the ground close to your home is sloping. If it slopes towards your home, you’ve got an issue. When it rains, water will follow the slope or grade of your lot. If the ground around your home slopes toward your home, the water will move toward your home and pool. This can lead to moisture seeping into your foundation and basement. To correct the issue, re-slope the ground to direct water away from your home. Some shovels and a bit of hard work should do the trick.

Image via Angie's List

Caulking – Although this is a chore you should have tackled before the winter (it really helps with drafts and pests), if you have yet to do it, do it now. Sealing cracks in your foundation and around windows and doors will help to keep moisture and bugs out of your home. It will also help to keep cool, conditioned air in and hot air out.  

This is something most homeowners can tackle on their own, but if this is outside your comfort zone, reach out to a professional.

We hope our spring cleaning series has helped you get more organized and prepared as we inch closer to summer. Missed our pieces on cleaning and organizing? Check ‘em out here and here