Spring is a wonderful time in Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, and Mississippi. It’s the perfect time to attend to maintenance and home improvement tasks before the summer heat and storms arrive.
Here’s our spring maintenance checklist with 16 tips to help you find and repair any damage incurred over the winter and get your home ready for summer.
- Checking for Winter Damage
Fully tour your home and lawn looking for any damage incurred over the winter months. It’s important to take steps now to correct any problems before they can get bigger and more costly. Watch for shingles that are loose or missing, siding that’s damaged, gutter and downspout damage, and cracks or shifting in the sidewalks or driveway.
- Cleaning Your Yard
We’ve put it off all winter long and perhaps skipped a few things in the fall. It is now time to remove fallen tree limbs, rake up all those leaves, and put down fresh mulch. It’s a ton of work, but you’ll be rewarded with a great-looking yard.
- Trimming Trees and Shrubs
Spring is the best time for trimming your trees and shrubs. Be sure to cut back any limbs hanging over your roof and threatening to come down in a storm. Trim back branches on the trees around your home to improve airflow and allow sunlight. This will reduce the risk of mold and mildew growth.
- Cleaning Gutters and Downspouts
A very important ritual is to clean out your home’s gutters and downspouts twice a year. They must be clear and flowing during rainstorms to make sure water doesn’t pool around your foundation, finding cracks, and entering your basement or crawl space. Clean out all leaves and remove any blockages.
- Clearing Outdoor Drainage
Examine your buried drains, storm drains, and other rainwater management systems closely. Add your downspout extensions as well. Clear out any clogs with a plumbing snake, then wash out pipes with a garden hose. It’s critical to get them clear before the rains start.
- Inspecting Your Home’s Foundation
In your home and lawn inspection tour, pay close attention to your foundation. Snow and ice can open up basement or crawl space cracks that let in summer rain. Shifting can also occur over the winter. Look for changes in your basement or crawl space, both inside and out. We can help with a free inspection.
- Maintaining the Foundation’s Landscaping
Moving water away from your foundation is critical to reducing leaks and preventing flooding. Start with any window wells, clearing them of any debris and making sure they’re sealed against rain. Trim shrubs away from the foundation. Watch for mulch that’s stacked up against the wall, moving it back. Look for root growth near the foundation.
- Inspecting the Outdoor Plumbing
Now is a good time to check outdoor faucets, the AC unit or heat pump, pool area and equipment, and everything else that has spent the winter outdoors. Add any items you find to your repair list.
- Testing the Irrigation System
Start at the controller and make sure it’s still working. Turn on every zone and check every sprinkler head. This will identify anything that’s broken or needs adjustment. This is a good time to make needed adjustments for any coverage problems you experienced last summer.
- Reseeding Lawn Spots
Start your summer lawn off on the right foot by checking for bare or thin spots. Then reseed those with a matching type of grass. Use a lawn seed blanket on slopes to keep the seed in place while it sets roots.
- Checking and Repairing Screen Doors and Windows
Make screens part of your spring home inspection looking for tears or holes. Even the smallest holes can let in mosquitoes. Repair kits are available at hardware stores.
- Inspecting for Pest Evidence
Check high and low for pest evidence. Birds, squirrels, and flying insects can damage your roof and eaves. Termites, ants, and animals do their damage at ground level. Seal any cracks or holes you find to prevent their entry. Consult an exterminator for expert help.
- Power Washing the Deck and Siding
Get the winter grime, mud, and dirt off your deck and siding with a pressure washer. Use the correct pressure setting that matches the wood and siding. As just one example, some vinyl siding companies recommend using liquid soap to avoid damage to the finish.
- Resealing Outdoor Woodwork
This is a great time to stain and reseal any outdoor woodwork. This includes decks, fences, trellises, and anything else you have out there. Make any needed repairs first and then bring them all back to life with a sealant.
- Scheduling HVAC Service
It will soon be the middle of the summer with plenty of heat and humidity. That’s not the time to be begging your HVAC repairman to head to your home. Start regular maintenance in the spring to get ahead of the curve. You’ll also catch problems early before they reach the catastrophic stage.
- Planning Summer Projects
Over the past year, many of us have been stuck at home. That’s when ideas about home improvements come to mind, like adding office space or a home gym. As you complete your spring checklist of repairs and updates, consolidate the lists and prioritize each item into a summer project action plan.
We can help with whatever foundation issues you may have found in your spring maintenance inspection. Contact the experts at AFS Foundation and Waterproofing Specialists for a free inspection and repair estimate.