As the spring thaw sets in and the days get warmer, it is a good idea to care for your home after a long, hard winter. A routine spring maintenance to clean and restore the following features and mechanical systems of your home will ensure your abode is in good working order throughout the season, and in some cases the whole year.
Disclaimer: Regular care and maintenance of your home not only increases the longevity of your property but helps prevent costly repairs and prolongs its value. The following maintenance steps should not replace the manufacturer’s recommendations. Products used for the cleaning and supportive functionality of your home’s systems and features should be approved by the manufacturer. We strongly suggest you use licensed contractors for any tasks that require the technical knowledge and/or physical ability to perform without injury to yourself or damage to the home.
The inside of your home will be more comfortable if you tend to those items that fall short of service with neglect.
- Inspect and service your air conditioning system. Check if the air filter needs replaced – dirty, clogged filters reduce air flow.
- If you have an air handing unit (AHU) equipped with a float switch or overflow pan, make sure these are clear of obstructions and functioning properly.
- Clean interior exhaust fans. To do this thoroughly, remove the fan cover. Vacuum inside the fan housing and around the motor. Wipe down the cover before reinstalling it.
- If you have a basement with a sump pump, check the pump to make sure it is operating properly. Clean the pump screen and remove any soil buildup from the well.
- Inspect and repair the following caulked areas (inside and outside your home), as necessary:
- Kitchen and bath wet areas (i.e., sinks, dishwasher, commodes, showers, etc.)
- Countertops, backsplashes, laminate seals, and walls
- Window and door seals
- Building penetrations (i.e., hoses, faucets, ductwork vents, fireplace and chimney vents)
- Vinyl, aluminum, or wood siding
- Stucco or mortar cracks
- Drywall cracks from interior settling or shrinkage
* Do NOT caulk the undersides of window trim, door trim, or siding. These gaps are designed to prevent moisture from getting trapped within the home structure.
- Replace smoke and carbon monoxide alarm batteries.
Some of the features outside your home work together with those inside to service your needs. An example would be the AC condenser unit. Other items ensure your home’s durability against the elements and/or enhance its curb appeal.
- Check your outdoor AC condenser unit for obstructions and debris. Trim back bushes, weeds, and grass to prevent infiltration. (Refer to manufacturer recommendations for additional maintenance steps.)
- Inspect roof for broken or missing shingles, tiles, or shakes.
- Repair gaps in roof flashing and soffits.
- Clean roof valleys and crickets to divert water off the roof.
- Clean and repair gutters. Make sure gutters are free of material that could prevent the flow of water. Make certain there are splash deflectors at the base of the downspouts to deflect water away from your home.
- Clean windows and window screens. Repair or replace damaged screens.
- Lubricate window tracks, latches, and rollers with 100% silicone spray.
- If you have sliding glass doors, clean doors and sliding screens. Repair or replace the screens if damaged. Inspect the sweep or gasket for wear and tear and replace if necessary. Vacuum and lubricate the door tracks, and then adjust the rollers as needed.
- Inspect your garage door(s), rails, and lock system. Consult a professional before adjusting the tension. Clear the tracks of debris. Tighten all nuts and bolts. Lubricate the hinges and hardware with white lithium spray or grease, as necessary. Test the auto-reverse safety features of the door(s), and also consider changing your garage door opener code as a security precaution.
- Turn on the water supply to the hose bibbs and exterior faucets. Check these outputs for leaks.
- Inspect and adjust your sprinkler system. Set timers according to the season to ensure just enough water is utilized per station. Refer to local water use restrictions for your community and surrounding area to make sure you comply.
- If you have a crawl space beneath your home, check the space to make sure there is no standing water. Ensure all insulation is intact and all HVAC supply and return lines are secure.
- Adjust thresholds and door sweeps. Check weather stripping around doors and windows.