Thursday, January 10, 2013

Getting Your Home Ready for Spring

We've noticed some abnormally warm weather these past few days, and that has us thinking about spring. It's one of the most beautiful times of the year for East Tennessee, and a welcome respite from the bitter cold of winter. While the official start of spring is still several months away, there are many different ways you can be proactive in preparing your home for the warmer months. The change in weather can effect many different parts of your home, from the interior to the landscaping. A little preparation now will help to minimize the headaches associated in weather change later on. Here are some tips.

Start Outside 

Your home's exterior often takes the most damage during Winter, making it an ideal place to begin preparations. Walk around the permitter of your home  and pay close attention to the caulking around windows and doors, the sections where the exterior walls meet the roof and the ground, your drain pipes, and gutters. It may be helpful to take a notepad for notes. After that, open the windows and look at the weather stripping, making sure everything has remained sealed. 

The change in temperature can cause parts of your home to shrink and expand. In Tennessee, it's common for temperatures to jump several degrees in a short span of time. Taking note of which portions of your home are most affected is a great place to start in season-change preparation. 

Check Your Interior 

The interior of your home can also take damage due to weather change, though often not as much as the exterior. The spring is one of the most crucial times to review your home’s major heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (or HVAC) systems.

Before the weather changes permanently, make sure the air filters are clean, or replaced if needed. Check your air conditioner before the weather turns warmer to make sure it is in working properly and that there are no severe problems. Catching a problem in your system before it becomes a major issue can save you a lot of money in the long run. 

Start Cleaning Early 

We all know about the classic "Spring Cleaning" ritual. However, you might find it easier to clean in small portions through out the Winter. Take a little time each week to clear out cob webs, tighten pipes, and dry up moisture can save you a lot of time in the spring. These small issues can build up into big problems, and in worse case scenarios they can even cause damage to your home. Remember that keeping your house in tidy order is something best done year round. 

Don't neglect cleaning projects all spring. If you noticed a drip, fix it. If you notice some rotted wood, tear it up. If you see some mouse droppings, set some traps. Yes, these are projects often put off til spring, but that doesn't mean you can't get an early jump on them today. 

Having a home is a big commitment, especially during a change in seasons. Following these simple tips will help ensure that your home is ready for spring, and that any large problems will be caught early enough to minimize damage, cost, and time spent.