The snow has finally melted here in Ohio. We can now see what’s been left behind under all that slush, ice, and snow.
It’s also the perfect time to clean your home and conduct a rigorous maintenance routine.
Here’s our suggested spring maintenance checklist with 16 tips to help you find and repair any damage as well as get your home ready for summer.
1. Inspecting for Winter Damage
As the first step, conduct a visual inspection of the outside of your home. Start at the top, looking for any roof damage. Then look closely for damaged siding or trim, gutter and downspout damage, cracks in sidewalks or driveway, and chimney tilt. Don’t ignore minor fixes. They can quickly become major problems.
2. Checking 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.
3. Reviewing the Landscaping Around Your Foundation
Check that any root growth from trees and shrubs is cut back well away from the foundation. 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 job.
4. Cleaning Up Your Yard
Remove tree limbs, leaves, and dead flowers or plants. Mowing and edging for that first time can really spruce up things. Adding new mulch can also make a big difference. But make sure you don’t stack up the mulch around your foundation, as it can cause basement or crawl space moisture problems.
5. Seeding Bare Spots in Your Lawn
This is a good time to seed any bare spots in your lawn to allow the new grass to establish itself before the summer heat and rain. Make sure you pick the right seed for your lawn, including the amount of shade. Use lawn blankets on slopes to hold the seed in place during germination.
6. Pruning Trees and Shrubs
Trim trees and shrubs. Remove dead branches and limbs. Make sure you cut branches back from your home to allow airflow and sunshine to help reduce the risk of mold and mildew growth. Remove any tree branches that overhang your roof. They can damage your home in a windstorm.
7. Cleaning Gutters and Downspouts
Gutters and downspouts prevent rainwater from pouring onto your foundation. Clear out the leaves and remove any obstructions in the downspouts. Repair any winter damage. Install gutter guards to prevent leaves from collecting in the gutters.
8. Clearing Outdoor Drains
Leaves and debris can clog your rainwater drainage system. Clear your storm drains and downspout extensions. Wash out the pipes with a garden hose and get them ready to handle the summer rain.
9. Testing Your Irrigation System
Controlling soil moisture is critical to your landscape and foundation. Turn on each zone in your irrigation system to make sure it’s working. Identify any pipes and sprinkler heads that need to be repaired. It’s also a good time to adjust sprinkler coverage and water flow.
10. Checking All Outdoor Plumbing
Outdoor faucets can freeze during the winter. Now is the time to test and repair them. Heat pumps and AC units can also be damaged during the winter. Any pool equipment should also be on your inspection list.
11. Repairing Screen Doors and Windows
Bugs can find their way into your home through slight tears or even small holes in the screens. Inspect the screens and replace those that are badly damaged. For small holes, you can find repair kits at a hardware store.
12. Inspecting for Pest Damage
Look both high and low for any pest damage. Roof level damage can come from birds, squirrels, and flying insects. At ground level look for ants, termites, and even burrowing animals. Help prevent pest entry by sealing up any cracks and holes you find.
13. Power Washing the Deck and Siding
Dirt, mud, and grime collect on your deck and siding over the winter months. Use a pressure washer set to the right flow for the specific wood or siding. It will give you a nice, clean start to the summer.
14. Sealing the Fence and Deck
It’s a good time to stain and seal the wood after you’ve cleaned the deck and repaired any damage you find. Do this at least every other year to maintain the wood and protect it from heat, humidity, and rainstorms.
15. Scheduling HVAC System Service
Add a regularly scheduled service in early spring for the air conditioning system and in fall for the heating system. Trying to find a repair service during the hottest day of the year is the last thing you want.
16. Building a List of Summer Projects
Over our long winter, you’ve probably collected a few ideas for home improvement. That may have included adding new living spaces such as a workout room, office, or fan cave. This is a good time to build that list and include the spring maintenance tasks you’ve found. Then prioritize them for scheduling throughout the summer.
If your list of improvements included adding more space, a finished basement could be the answer. But the basement needs to be fully waterproofed before you get started on that type of project.
We operate out of Cincinnati and Columbus to provide services throughout central and southern Ohio. We can help with your basement or crawl space project or any foundation issues you may have found in your spring maintenance inspection.
Contact us at Ohio Basement Authority for a free inspection and repair estimate.