Spring is in the air! Are you and your home ready?
If you lived anywhere other than Hawaii and California this winter then you probably got a full helping of winter, and all the charms that come with it. Like us, you are probably celebrating that the sun is out again, and spring is finally in the air. But now that the clouds have parted and the weather is warming up, it’s time to think about something else that comes with spring… spring cleaning!
Spring into spring with this checklist for targeting areas that may need maintenance after a harsh winter. On the bright side, these quick chores will give you an excuse to get outside and spend some long-awaited time in the sunshine. So bust out that Windex, sharpen your lawnmower blades, and get ready for some spring-cleaning inside and outside the house.
Outside the House
Are your gutters loose or leaky?
If yes, double check to make sure your downspouts drain away from the foundation and are clear and free of debris. Water in the basement or crawl spaces can often be caused by improper drainage during the spring.
Are there low areas in your yard?
If yes, fill low areas in the yard with compacted soil. Spring rains can cause yard flooding, which can lead to foundation flooding and damage.
Are any shingles lost or damaged?
If yes, replace them or start a budget for a replacement roof. Don’t wait; the spring and summer sun will cause even more damage and by next winter it could be too late.
Image Source: Wikipedia Commons
Have any concrete slabs cracked or moved?
If yes, fill cracks with concrete crack filler or silicone caulk. If weather permits, power-wash and then seal the concrete. Make sure all exterior slabs except pool decks drain away from the home’s foundation.
Are there any potential fire hazards, such as firewood near the home?
If yes, remove the firewood and store it at least 18 inches off the ground at least 2 feet from the structure.
Inside the house
Are your closets in disarray?
If yes, get rid of unused clothes and accessories, and organize the rest by how you get dressed in the morning. Your closet will be organized, and your daily routine will be quicker.
Image Source: Flickr
Does your carpet have stains or odors?
If yes, have it cleaned by a professional. For less-trafficked areas, you can get away with cleaning the carpets once or twice a year. For higher-traffic areas try to have them cleaned three or four times a year.
Is your tile looking dingy?
If yes, clean your bathroom and kitchen tiles with a cleaner that has “neutral pH” on the label. You can also mix baking soda and water for a homemade cleaner: Pour 1/2 cup baking soda into 2 gallons water and mix very well. Then apply the liquid with a string mop or sponge mop. You can use the same baking soda and water mixture for grout as well.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Are your countertops stained or damaged?
If yes, you just need a little elbow grease. Poultice away rust, and remove soap scum or mildew with a solution of 1/2 cup ammonia in a gallon of water. For most coffee or juice stains, you can use a little hydrogen peroxide in water, plus a few drops of ammonia.
Are your wood floors looking worn?
If yes, first clean scratched areas using warm water or a rag dampened with mineral spirits. Allow it to dry and then conceal the scratch with a permanent marker similar to the color of the floor. For deeper scratches rough up the area using a fine-grade sandpaper or steel wool. Follow the grain and rub in a circular motion.
Image Source: Wikipedia Commons