Home Maintenance and Cleaning Guide

   Spring is here! Birds singing, bees buzzing, pollen flying. Pop a Claritin and let’s talk spring cleaning and home maintenance. After winter, it is time for some fresh air! Many people are ready at this point to open those windows and air out their home. It is also a key time for traditional spring cleaning. So, how can you know your house is living its best life? There are several cleaning and maintenance tasks that will make sure your home is functioning at its top level.

   With the weather turning nicer, one of the first jobs you can tackle is cleaning up outside. All leaves and other debris should be removed from your gutters. Gutters should discharge away from your house as spring brings extra rain. You do not want the water finding its way into your home. While you are on your roof, check for any loose or missing shingles. This will lead to water leaks over time. This is also a great opportunity to examine your facia and trim for any signs of deterioration. Exposure can lead to wood rot and access points for pests and vermin.

   Many people also choose to replenish mulch in their flowerbeds. Mulch can make your beds look beautiful, but just remember that mulch against your home creates a perfect environment for pests, especially termites. They start by eating the mulch and then find their way into the wood framing. Even though rock is typically more expensive upfront, it does not need to be replaced every year and it deters pests from entering your home.

   Finally, check your spigots to make sure they function properly and do not leak. These are used most this time of year with watering gardens, flowerbeds, and trees. Undetected leaks can really drive up your water bill. It is also a great time to repair any cracks, or uneven areas in your driveway or walkways as it is important to maintain level walking surfaces. As adults and especially children enjoy the outdoors more, you do not want tripping hazards to spoil the fun.

   On the inside, start with larger items just like you did outside. It is important to have your HVAC system professionally serviced. Your unit should be maintained according to recommendations made by the manufacturer. At bare minimum, change your filter. Also, check the water heater for leaks or rust. Both rust and leaks indicate the unit is deteriorating and needs replaced. You want to make sure both your HVAC and water heater are functioning properly to ensure your family’s safety.

   In the kitchen, cleaning and maintaining appliances is key. One only knows what is lurking under a refrigerator or dishwasher. Washing out appliances and simply giving them a thorough cleaning helps drawers and sliding shelves function properly. Clean the kitchen exhaust hood as well. Check that your fire extinguisher(s) are also in working order, especially with grilling season in full swing.

   In your laundry room, clean your dryer vent line and damper. Many vacuum cleaners come with attachments to help aid in this. However, if those do not work, there are many universal options made specifically for cleaning these tight spaces. Also, check the water connections for drips and/or leaks.

   Finally, a deep cleaning on carpets, floors, curtains, and bedding will also freshen your house. Dirt, odors, and other unmentionables are embedded in these fabrics. It is always a simple way to create a fresher smelling space. Washing areas that do not normally get cleaned will also help. Of course, you can spring clean as much or as little as you like.

   Spring cleaning and maintenance help protect your home and make sure it is efficient. Outside spaces are hit with a lot of debris in the fall and winter months so spring cleaning is the ideal time to maintain your outside areas. Since we spend a lot of time indoors during these months too, it is a perfect time to freshen the inside of your home as well. These are all DIY options for home maintenance and cleaning. However, there are several local companies available that could assist you in these tasks if you feel they are beyond your skill set. Understanding how your home functions and then maintaining and cleaning it will result in a highly efficient house.