Rising temperatures, more sunshine, and blooming flowers – spring is here! It’s a season of transformation as the snow melts away and flowers start to bloom, and one that motivates many to start a home improvement project (or two).
If you’re ready to upgrade your property – inside and out -- a great first step is preparing your home for warmer weather and checking for any damage that may have been caused by the departing season’s ice and snow. This not only helps you prepare for larger projects, but it’s also a great way to fix small issues before they turn into big problems.
Not sure how to get started? We’ve broken out some tasks organized by home area.
- Inspect sprinklers for punctures and other damage that could lead to leaking and yard flooding. A leaking sprinkler, no matter how slow, could lead to a leak that can damage your basement or your home’s foundation.
- Remove debris and leaves that can prevent new grass from growing underneath. Removing this debris will also help prevent harm to children who may fall on sharp branches.
- Trim bushes, trees, and other foliage that may have grown out of control. Pruning branches helps remove dead branches that may blow into your home during a wind storm.
- Check decks and patios for boards in need of repair, then clean the boards to extend the life of the wood. A damaged patio board could lead to injury if not fixed, and could also lead to extended damage throughout the patio.
- Clean grill to get rid of old debris and mess. Excess grease can lead to a flare up and possible fire damage to your home if it’s located near your property. Cleaning a grill also help heat the grill faster.
- Assess the state of your lawn furniture and equipment, repairing, washing, or replacing as necessary. If lawn furniture is broken or used, replace it to avoid injury to those who use it. Chairs can wear down after being exposed to the elements, and playground equipment may need to be inspected to avoid injury to family members.
- Take inventory of your gardening equipment to make sure you have what you need for maintenance, flower beds, etc. Lawnmowers and other gardening equipment will require maintenance to continue functioning. For example, lawnmowers need oil changes once every spring or 50 hours of use to run well for years to come.
Your Home’s Exterior
- Clean gutters and downspouts to remove blockage and allow water to flow properly. Having blockage could lead to overflow that can fall along the foundation of the building or lead to structural damage of buildings in certain cases.
- Check roof for missing shingles, damaged pipes, or anything out of the ordinary. If you’re not comfortable climbing on the roof, do a once-over with binoculars. Don’t hesitate to reach out to an expert for help if you notice anything out of the ordinary or are unsure if repair is needed.
- Inspect your driveway for cracks or damage caused by thawing ice. Ice and snow lead soil to expand, which can lead to unsightly damage to your driveway. Cracked concrete can also cause damage to cars, mold in areas connected to basements or other structures, and tripping hazards.
- Check outside-facing walls for damage to stucco, brick, or wood. Look for stains that could indicate water damage inside the walls. Stucco damage repair and damage to walls can be fixed by professionals.
- Look for foundational cracks that may require repair. Not taking care of these now could lead to extensive water damage if there’s a flood. The water will spill into the cracks and could cause uneven floors in your home, mold growth, and leaking water into basements.
- Find your home’s sump pump and make sure it’s still in working order. Check to make sure that the water drains properly and away from your home by clearing debris and pouring water into the pit.
Your Home’s Interior
- Look for leaking around windows. This means caulking and weather stripping may need to be replaced. If you see cracks, it might be time for new windows. Failing to do so could mean your home will take longer to heat or cool, which could be a costly mistake.
- Clean your windows and replace the mesh if needed. The mesh prevents debris from entering your home, and can help protect your home from unwanted insects.
- Think about areas of your home that are typically neglected, like the blinds, rails, cabinets, drawers, and closets. Give them a good cleaning by using the appropriate products for the material type.
- Check the A/C unit and clean air ducts to ensure your home stays cool during the hot summer months. Cleaning your home’s air ducts protects your HVAC system and ensures it continues to function throughout the year.
- Inspect your attic for signs of rodents or other intruders. Their droppings could lead to wood rot in your attic and harmful health risks to your family.
- Look for damp insulation or leaks caused by melting ice dams. During winter months, ice dams will need to be removed since they may lead to leaks in your attic which could cause mold in your insulation. Water damage may also occur as it leaks into your home’s walls.
- Check your basement for dampness which could indicate a leak or potential flooding if heavy rain occurs. If you need basement water removal, rely on an expert to help you out, doing it alone may mean that you’re not properly dehumidifying your basement.
- Go over all walls and ceilings for signs of water damage. If you see some signs of water damage, reach out for water damage restoration services to help address the issue.
The Importance of Spring Cleaning
These are simple actions that have long-lasting payoff, so make sure you’re going through them on an annual basis. Failing to do so could result in costly damage to your home that will require home restoration services. The small cracks and issues you see today can create much larger problems, especially if severe weather hits your area.
But remember that you don’t have to tackle all home projects on your own. If you have extensive water damage, mold, or other property damage, the experts at ServiceMaster Restore are here to help. We’ll work with you to address the problems you may have found during your inspection and make sure that your home is safe from damage. Find a ServiceMaster Restore location near you today and see how we can help you recover.