Winter can seem to drag on and on. Then, all too soon, it’s spring and time for home cleaning and maintenance.
Here’s our spring maintenance checklist with 16 tips to help you get your home ready for summer by finding and repairing any damage incurred over those long months of winter.
1. Check for Winter Damage
Conduct a full visual inspection of your home and yard. Start with the roof, looking for any loose or missing shingles. Also, look over the gutters and downspouts for any signs of damage. Siding needs your close attention as well. Watch for cracks or shifting in the walkways and driveway, and look for chimney tilt.
2. Clean Your Yard
Pick up and remove fallen tree limbs, dead plants, and debris that collected over the winter. Rake up leaves as well. Mowing and edging for the first time can really help the appearance. If you’re adding new mulch, make sure you don’t stack it up around the foundation because it can bring about basement or crawl space moisture problems.
3. Trim Trees and Shrubs
Spring and fall are great times to trim your trees and shrubs. Cut back any limbs hanging over your roof that threaten damage during a storm. Trim branches on the trees around your home to improve airflow and allow sunlight. This reduces the risk of mold and mildew growth.
4. Clean Gutters and Downspouts
Spring and fall are also the perfect times to clean out leaves and remove any blockages from your home’s gutters and downspouts. It’s essential that they are clear to move rainwater off your roof and away from the foundation. If it pools around the foundation, it could find any cracks and enter your basement or crawl space.
5. Clear Outdoor Drainage
Leaves and debris can also clog your rainwater drainage system. Examine your buried drains, storm drains, and downspout extensions closely. Clear out any blockages with a plumbing snake. Then flush out pipes with a garden hose. Make sure you get them clear before the rains start.
6. Inspect Your Home’s Foundation
Examine the foundation for cracks, bulges, or gaps between the soil and the foundation walls. Winter ice can cause new cracks and expand existing cracks. Wet soil freezing and frost heave only add to the damage. If anything looks damaged, schedule a free inspection.
7. Maintain Foundation Landscaping
Trim shrubs away from the foundation. Look for root growth near the foundation. Watch for mulch that’s stacked up against the wall and move it back. The slope of the landscape is also important to prevent the pooling of water while routing it well away from the foundation. This will also help your gutters and downspouts do their jobs.
8. Inspect Outdoor Plumbing
Winter’s freezing temperatures can take a toll on outdoor plumbing. Check outdoor faucets, AC units or heat pumps, pool equipment, and anything else that’s been exposed to freezing temperatures, snow, and ice.
9. Test Irrigation System
Don’t run your irrigation system without first running a thorough inspection. You don’t want to pour water onto your lawn and around your foundation. Manually turn on each zone, checking pipes and sprinkler heads for proper operation. This is also a great time to make coverage adjustments to resolve any issues from the past summer heat.
10. Reseed Lawn Spots
When cleaning up the lawn you probably noticed a few bare spots in the grass. Reseed those now before the summer heat and rainstorms arrive. Use a lawn seed blanket on slopes to keep the seed in place while it germinates.
11. Repair Screen Doors and Windows
Even the smallest holes in screens can let in mosquitoes and other insects. Look them over for tears and holes. Replace those that are damaged. You can also repair small holes using kits that are available at hardware stores.
12. Inspect for Pest Damage
Go back over your home looking for the slightest sign of pest damage. Birds, squirrels, and flying insects including bees and wasps can damage your roof and eaves. Termites, ants, and animals do their damage at ground level. Seal any cracks or holes you find to help prevent their entry and repair any damage you find.
13. Power Wash Deck and Siding
Over the winter dirt, mud, and grime collected on your deck and siding. Use a pressure washer to clear it off. Make sure you use the correct pressure setting so you don’t inadvertently damage the wood or siding. As an example, some vinyl siding companies recommend using liquid soap to avoid damage to the siding’s finish.
14. Reseal Outdoor Woodwork
The power washing may have revealed some repairs that are required. It’s also a great time to stain and seal the deck or other outdoor wood. That could include fences, trellises, and other items. Resealing maintains the wood and protects it from the summer heat and rainstorms.
15. Schedule HVAC Service
It’s a good idea to schedule regular maintenance checks for your air conditioning system in the spring and the heating system in the fall. You’ll catch problems early before they become major repair headaches.
16. Plan Summer Projects
Our long winters are good for contemplating home improvement projects for the coming spring and summer. If you’ve thought of some improvements, now’s the time to jot those down and add the spring maintenance tasks you’ve identified. Then place them in order according to your priorities and budget.
We operate out of Grand Junction and serve the Colorado Western Slope. We can help with your basement or crawl space home improvement projects or any foundation issues you may have found in your spring maintenance inspection.
Contact us at Foundation Repair of Western Colorado for a free inspection and repair estimate.