Some warm(ish) weather has returned to Michigan and we can all rejoice! Well, not so fast. I’ve found that once you think winter is gone, that’s when the snowstorm hits. But I digress.
March 20 marked the official beginning of spring and it’s time to get ready for the outdoor season, the time of year you can enjoy your yard and the beautiful weather Michigan brings us.
There are a few things you should be checking following the winter we just endured and I collected them into an easy checklist format for you to print out and check off as you get your home ready for spring.
As always, we recommend using safest possible methods for working in and around your home. Use all ladders with extreme caution, following the appropriate safety precautions, using a spotter and any necessary fall protection. Never approach or work near a power line. When in doubt, call a professional.
1. Clear your gutters of debris.
I know this one gets repeated often, especially here, but there’s a reason. Gutters get neglected and they serve a very important purpose. If you don’t have a gutter protection system and haven’t peered inside your gutters lately, chances are they are backed up full of sludge. Get them cleared out and ready to handle the pending April showers.
2. Check your downspouts
Check to ensure downspouts are attached and pointed away from your home (or into a rain barrel). This is somewhat of a follow-up on the gutters item – ensuring that all water is flowing safely away from your foundation is important to keep your basement, crawl space and foundation as dry as possible.
3. Check for damaged or missing shingles.
The snow and ice has a way of messing with your roof and any missing or broken shingles can lead to a host of problems you definitely don’t want to deal with. Catching this early can prevent costly damage.
4. Check for broken or loose gutter spikes.
While you are checking on your roof shingles, make sure any spikes that attach your gutters to your house have not wriggled loose. This is very common, especially after being loaded up with snow and ice all winter. Hammer them back in or get them replaced if they are missing.
5. Check your water spigots for leaks.
Any places where you attach garden hoses are prone to slow leaks especially if they are older valves or if they get exercised often. They can ice over and fail leading to a stream of water running down your house and onto your foundation which is a big problem. Get these fixed as soon as you can!
6. Check your siding
Look for loose siding, missing paint and broken caulking around windows. All three of these help protect your home from the sun, wind and rain. If they are missing, your home is aging faster than it should be and there is probably water damage being done.
7. Check for overhead trees getting close to your roof or house.
Before the trees fully leaf is the best time to trim back branches that may be close to touching your roof or home. Use an extension saw or hire a professional to get this done before it’s a lot bigger of a job or your roof has been damaged.
8. Check your chimney
Look for loose bricks or broken mortar. Snow and ice wreak havoc on brick and mortar, especially with the frequent hot/cold fluctuation of your chimney, which vents your furnace and hot water system. This expansion and contraction can lead to broken joints and loose bricks which is a problem for the health of your chimney, your roof and your attic. Get eyes on this area so you can address any problems here.
This should get you started and address most of the biggest issues resulting from a long, cold winter.
If you have any questions about your gutters, roof, insulation or siding, be sure to give our Pros a call at 888-776-1998, we can help. You can also easily book an appointment by visiting our estimates page.