Spring is just around the corner – next week, to be exact. Whether the temperatures reflect that fact or not, there’s one thing we can count on, warmer weather is sure to come. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to start taking inventory of exterior projects. Whether you are a do-it-yourselfer or prefer to hire a reputable contractor, there are steps you can take to get your home in shape for those warm, sunny days ahead.
Here are our top 5 tips to help get you started:
Examine the Roof & Chimney
Check for damage to shingles on your home, garage, shed, gazebo, or other outdoor structures. Even if your area doesn’t experience extreme cold, wintery conditions can take a toll on a roof. It can cause a loss of or damage to shingles, especially on older homes. The roof is a major factor in your home’s defense system, and damage can lead to costly repairs to the exterior and interior structure. You’ll also want to check for and remove debris from the roof’s valleys and crevices.
It’s also a good idea to inspect the chimney for debris and damage. Examine the joints, brick, stone, and siding around it as well. Now’s a great time to have the chimney cleaned by a reputable chimney sweep, too.
Don’t forget to make safety a priority! If you aren’t comfortable climbing on ladders or onto the roof itself, use binoculars to examine the shingles and chimney.
Check Trim, Fascia, Soffits, & Gutters
Examine trim, fascia, and soffits for cracks, chips, peeling paint and similar issues. These exposed surfaces, whether wood, vinyl, or other materials, may incur winter related damage. Making repairs now helps avoid leaks and further harm from insects and spring storms.
inspect gutters for leaks or areas in need of repair. This can prevent poor drainage and possible future damage to other areas of your home, such as crawlspaces and basements. Make sure downspouts are positioned to drain correctly. Clear any debris that’s accumulated over the winter.
Don’t forget to inspect the exterior walls near gutters, downspouts, and under the eaves too. Discolored or damaged areas can indicate leaks and other potential issues. Repair and secure these areas to prevent further weather damage, decay, and/or access for unwanted insects or small animals.
Survey Decks, Patios, & Foundations
Check your deck, stairs, railings, and posts for loose nails and boards, rotting wood, peeling paint, or other issues and make necessary repairs. Remove any debris and clean or pressure wash the surface. Spring’s also a great time to spruce up with fresh paint or stain. For more deck maintenance and repair tips, check out our post, A Deck Check Up.
Examine patios and other concrete areas. They should drain away from your home to prevent water from collecting and damaging exterior or interior surfaces. Repair cracks or other problem areas that might be a drainage or safety issue.
While you’re at it, check the foundation for cracks and damaged areas. Pay special attention to where the foundation meets pipes, wires, dryer vents, pet doors, etc. Caulk or repair any cracks or gaps, and repair broken siding.
Inspect Windows & Doors
Check the weather stripping and caulked areas around doors and windows. Remove and replace as necessary. This easy fix helps maximize your energy dollars, particularly for keeping that cool air inside for the coming warmer months. Inspect and repair screens too, to prevent insects from invading your space. Clean windows and glass doors to allow the sun’s rays to shine inside.
Test Spigots & Hoses
Test outdoor spigots to make sure they’re working properly. If you suspect that one has a leak, hold your thumb or finger over the spout; if the water stops running there may be a leak in the pipes. Connect and test hoses for cracks and leaks too. This will ensure that they’ll be ready for spring planting and other activities.
Preventative maintenance like this can go a long way, saving time and money. Why not take advantage of pleasant spring weather and assess your home’s exterior needs now. It will leave you more time to enjoy your favorite summer activities with family and friends.
Don’t forget, we offer an extensive line of home improvement tools and great products from Benjamin Moore, California Paints, Waterlox, Zar Stains, and others that can help you with your spring tasks. From caulk and painting supplies to deck stain, pressure washer rental and more, we can help you choose the right items for those springtime projects.