How to prepare your home for spring with cleaning and maintenance
Warmer weather and longer days of sunshine tend to wake us from our long winter’s nap. As signs of spring emerge, we may get the urge to clear out the old. Although spring cleaning was once a necessity due to the buildup of soot and dirt throughout the cold winter months, it’s a practice that maintains prevalence even today. Even with modern-day conveniences, many households maintain the tradition of springtime deep cleaning.
The spring season is a great time to get your house set for the rest of the year. An annual inspection and spruce-up of your home’s interior and exterior lets you stay on top of any issues going on in your home. This article will provide you with a list of things in and around your home to check and explain how you can prepare for the warmer months ahead.
Spring home maintenance checklist for your interior
There are several interior components of your home that help you stay comfortable. With warmer weather around the corner, things like routine HVAC maintenance will keep your air conditioning running when you need it. Checking these types of systems early will help you avoid surprise breakdowns later.
Other things to add to your home maintenance checklist include checking major appliances, conducting a safety check and making sure there are no plumbing issues. Let’s go over specifics on how to check your home’s interior components.
Check your air conditioning system
If your summers are blazing hot, you already know how important your air conditioning system is. The efficiency of the system is improved with regular maintenance, reducing energy use and cost.
The United States Department of Energy says the single most important thing you can do for your A/C system is to change and clean its filters. Old, dirty filters reduce airflow while increasing the amount of work the system has to exert to cool the home. By replacing air filters every couple of months, you can lower energy consumption and improve the system’s efficiency.
Other A/C maintenance tasks include cleaning condenser coils, correcting bent coil fins and unclogging condensate drains. For complex issues, such as testing for refrigerant leaks or checking belt tightness, it’s best to hire a professional HVAC contractor to look at your system.
Perform routine maintenance on your most-used appliances
Home appliances offer convenience and help save time. When one breaks down, it impacts just about every facet of your daily routine. With some regular maintenance and an annual inspection, you can extend the life of your household appliances. The following are tasks you will want to do to take care of your major appliances:
- Your washing machine and dryer are household workhorses. With regular maintenance, you can extend their life span in addition to helping minimize the need for repairs.
- As much as you would like to rush through weekly laundry, avoid overloading the washing machine. Too many items make the machine off-balance during the spin cycle. This can damage the washing machine drum and your clothing. When washing clothes, bedding or towels, promptly move them to the dryer to avoid mold and mildew buildup. Another way to maintain your washing machine is to run a cycle with only detergent and hot water to clean any buildup that has accumulated.
- Just like overfilling the washing machine, avoid adding too many items to the dryer all at once. It actually causes a longer drying time by doing this. Be sure to clean the lint trap before each use. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), dryer lint and dust are one of the leading causes of home fires. Cleaning the vent duct system that leads to the exterior will also help your dryer run efficiently.
Conduct a routine safety check
People find refuge and a sense of security in their homes, but accidents happen (though many are preventable). The American College of Emergency Physicians reports that “33 million people are injured by consumer products in the home each year. But most injuries are avoidable, so practice prevention.” By performing routine safety checks, you can identify hazards in your home.
Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they are in working order. It’s recommended that you test your alarms once a month. Be sure your fire extinguisher has been properly mounted and accessible. Have your fire extinguisher annually inspected by a state-licensed company.
The following are additional items to add to your safety checklist:
- Be sure your home address is clearly marked and visible from the street.
- Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors on each floor.
- Develop a fire escape plan.
- Trim trees away from overhead electrical lines.
- Clean your fireplace.
- Keep matches and lighters out of reach of children.
- Store flammable liquids and aerosol cans properly.
Make sure your plumbing system is in good shape
A working plumbing system is an essential component for any household. Inspecting your plumbing system will help catch issues before they become larger problems.
Leaky faucets, water pressure and slow drains are fairly easy for homeowners to identify. Some components that are overlooked include checking for damaged pipes and inspecting your home’s water heater for signs of leaks.
In the event of heavy leaks or indoor flooding, it is important to know where your home’s emergency shutoff valve and water meter are located. Test these valves to ensure they are in working order.
Get started on spring cleaning
Deep cleaning your home is a large undertaking but completely worthwhile to protect your investment and the overall health of your household.
Some tasks you can begin right now include:
- Checking for leaky waterspouts
- Inspecting and looking for any wobbly railings
- Resealing areas with caulk
- Making sure appliances are in good working order
- Removing buildup from air vents
- Contacting a pest control company for pest control treatments
- Wiping down high-traffic wall areas and making sure to touch up paint
Spring is the perfect time to take care of your home inside and out. Let’s explore ways to take care of the exterior of your home.
Spring home maintenance checklist for your exterior
The exterior of your home takes the brunt of the weather. With low temperatures, wind, rain and snow, it is important to inspect the exterior components of your home during the warmer months.
By checking your home’s irrigation system, roof, gutters and other exterior components, you can assess damage and make repairs to get your home ready for the months ahead.
Inspect and run your irrigation system
Irrigation systems save time and ensure your landscape is adequately watered. But when the system goes awry or sprinkler heads break, you are pouring water and money down the drain.
A test on each zone will let you determine if any damage has occurred while not in use and will give you enough time to repair or replace any broken heads in your sprinkler system.
Check your roof and gutters
Before the spring rains arrive, check your roof for any missing shingles. It’s a good idea to remove collected leaves and other debris that may have collected in the gutters and eaves, as well. Over time, debris will build up and lead to more serious damage to the structure.
Some homeowners prefer to do this on their own, but you can contact a professional roof inspector if you are uncomfortable with heights.
Pressure wash exterior components
Pressure washing cleans and increases your home’s curb appeal because it removes built-up grime and stains from a variety of surfaces. Pressure washers come with a variety of nozzle sizes, letting you clean a wide range of surfaces without the risk of damage.
Exterior items that benefit from pressure washing include:
- Patio furniture
- Garbage cans
Inspect your windows and doors
When inspecting exterior windows and doors, make sure there are no gaps that allow air or pests to enter through. This will help your home stay cool during the warmer months and save money on your electric bill.
Other items to look out for are the condition of the window screens. Are the screens securely in place and free of holes? Check that all locks are in working condition on windows and doors throughout the home.
Clean window sills and blinds with a cloth and mild cleaner. It will surprise you how bright a room becomes after taking care of this task.
Contact someone for a pest inspection
A pest problem is not only frustrating but can also threaten the structure of your home and even your health. Some health problems caused by pests include allergies and childhood asthma.
Termites can damage your home’s structure. By eliminating water and food sources in and around your home, you can help prevent termite infestation. Reach out to an extermination company if you have concerns about pests inside or outside of your home.
Protect your home with a home warranty from Cinch
With spring in the air, it’s important to make sure your home is taken care of. Protect your home with a home protection plan from Cinch Home Services. Cinch makes home protection easy; simply select a home warranty plan that suits your budget and coverage needs, giving you peace of mind that costly home repairs are covered.
Warranty options cover major home systems, such as heating and plumbing, as well as major appliances. For uncomplicated, comprehensive home warranty coverage, get a free quote today.