It may not feel like it right now but before we know it, spring will be here. You remember spring, right? That time of year when the weather begins to warm and we’re blessed with lots of sunlight – the better to see the toll a harsh winter takes on a house.
Like Punxsutawney Phil emerging on Ground Hog Day, the sight may make you long to postpone the upcoming season. Spring, however, waits for no man or woman. Besides, getting the maintenance chores out of the way quickly allows you get outside and bask in all that sunlight.
Water, water everywhere
Anything that is supposed to hold water, like the gutters, should be checked to ensure they are still capable of performing the job. Clear the detritus from them and pour water through them to check for leaks.
Anything that isn’t supposed to hold water that now has the capability of doing so, like craters in the yard, should be remedied. Fill those holes with soil to avoid the possibility of flooding when the spring rains come.
Roof isn’t what a dog says
While you’re checking the gutters, extend that ladder a bit higher and take a look at the roof. If you notice cupping or cracked, loose or missing shingles you’ll need to replace them soon.
If you’re brave enough to actually get up on the roof (be careful) you can do a much more thorough investigation. Otherwise, use binoculars to check for gaps around vents, the chimney and skylights. These are all areas where water can intrude into the home.
And weather stripping isn’t a gentlemen’s club
Stand inside the home and look around doors that lead outside. If you can see daylight anywhere around the perimeter, add weather stripping. This will help save on energy costs in the summer and should last until the following spring.
Next, go outside and check that side of the doors and the windows as well. If you see any gaps re-caulk them.
Until we reach our last frost date don’t do a lot of pruning. Tender young growth can be killed during an unexpected cold snap.
That doesn’t mean there aren’t landscaping chores to do to get the home ready for spring. Start by cleaning the yard. Rake out leaves and trash that blew in during the winter, pick up fallen branches and dispose of them and yank out the dead annuals. Gently push heaved plants back into the soil.
Leave the mulch in place until after the last frost at which point you’ll want to remove it and add a fresh layer, after planting.
Sure, this seems like a lot of work, but once you’re finished you can focus on planning more pleasurable activities during all that spring leisure time you’ve just freed up.