Now that spring is here there are several home maintenance items you should consider completing before summer. These are common as well as overlooked maintenance items such as roof, gutters and down spouts, windows and siding, patios and decks, the obvious and sometimes dreaded yard maintenance and let’s not forget that air conditioning unit. So with that said lets jump right in with:
Roof – The roof has taken the brunt of the winter weather and you should treat it right with a good cleaning and inspection. Trees, debris, moss, and wind can be a killer of your roof. Make sure to remove all debris and moss and conduct a thorough inspection to locate any issues. It is not recommended to pressure wash your roof due to potential damage. Generally a good sweeping with a stiff bristled broom or washing with a common garden hose will suffice. Then, if moss has reared its ugly head, it is recommended to treat with a moss killer like Moss Out or Moss Be Gone. There are other good products available and it is encouraged to follow the manufacturers application procedures to obtain the best results.
Gutters and Down Spouts – Now that winter has let go of its firm grip on us, it is time to clean your gutters. They will most likely be full of debris and as we all know, rain is always an ongoing condition throughout the year and the gutters and down spouts need to be clean to properly drain your roof. Make sure you have proper debris catching devices in the gutter to keep debris out of your drain lines. Repair any leaks that you may have found as this can damage your roofs facia boards.
Exterior Finishes – Your siding, windows, and doors protect you, your family, and your home from several enemies. Inspect the exterior of your home. Look for damaged or loose siding, windows, or doors also checking for potential leak locations. If necessary, repair any issues as needed and caulk any cracks with an exterior grade sealant such as OSI Quad, which can be purchased at any hardware store, and paint as necessary.
Patios, Walkways, and Decks – These areas have survived the winter and are areas we enjoy the most in summer. They may have damage, debris, or algae growth, which can be slippery and potentially dangerous to walk on. You want to keep your friends and family safe so clean these surfaces and inspect for any damage that may have occurred through the winter. Repair all damaged areas as needed and it is recommended to treat the concrete with an appropriate sealant as well as apply a proper coating of finish to your wood surfaces, i.e. stain, clear finish, or paint as applicable. Make certain you are following the manufacturers application instructions for best results.
Yard Maintenance – You never know what winter has left for us so it is recommended to cut back any vegetation or trees from the homes exterior to allow air movement and improving access for periodic inspection and maintenance. Vegetation can damage siding, roofs, windows, and doors as well as allow access to animals like squirrels, rodents, and bird nesting. Removing the vegetation from your home will also reduce the maintenance to your homes exterior finishes which can potentially be very costly.
Air Conditioner – Your air conditioner is generally overlooked and can play a significant role in the overall condition of your home. It not only cools and conditions your home it will also help dry the air on those hot and humid days of summer. Nothing is worse than calling out an already busy and most likely expensive HVAC professional, in the middle of the hot season, to repair your AC unit. Routine maintenance is relatively inexpensive and will give you peace of mind when calling on the air conditioner when you need it most.
The key to effective spring maintenance is simple – just do it. As Benjamin Franklin said, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. In other words, the cost of maintenance is minimal when compared to the potential cost of repairs.