When you find yourself with a little extra time on your hands, consider undertaking the home maintenance you may have been putting off. Now is the perfect time especially with warmer weather coming our way.
Here are seven tips to maintain your home from our home and auto insurance partner, The Personal.
- Check your eavestroughs and downspouts
Check for leaks, jams (often caused by dead leaves) and loose parts. Improper drainage could cause water to seep into the basement or crawl space, so make sure that water has a clear course to flow down and away from the foundation.
- Aerate and fertilize the lawn
Compacted soil can be a problem in low-lying areas of your yard. They tend to flood when it rains, and the pooling water can become a breeding ground for insects. To solve the problem quickly, rent an aerator to go over the affected areas. For a more affordable, long-term solution (for relatively small areas), add some earthworms to naturally aerate the compacted soil. Fertilizer is also an important step, as it nourishes the soil and improves the look of your lawn.
- Inspect your roof
Inspect your roof from the ground to see if shingles were lost or damaged during winter. Cracked, buckled or loose shingles will need to be replaced. If you need to get up on the roof to do repairs, be sure to wear a harness. If you don’t feel comfortable doing the repairs yourself, take note and call a contractor when current isolation requirements are lifted.
- Check the foundation
Check the concrete on your foundation for cracks or signs of movement. Fill small cracks with filler or silicone caulk. Then as soon as the weather is good enough, power wash it and seal the concrete. Taking the time to do this every spring can save you costly repairs down the line and help you make the most of your time at home. Flag any larger cracks and consult a professional when appropriate.
- Inspect your windows
Inspect your window frames for gaps and leaks, which can be caused by dramatic changes in temperature. During a summer heatwave, leaks will let hot air inside your house and can cost you a small fortune in AC. Seal gaps with silicone to stay cool in the summer.
- Manage humidity levels
Although many new builds are constructed to be extremely airtight, a house needs to breathe. Don’t turn off your heat recovery ventilator — it’s meant to run continuously to regulate the humidity levels in your home. Too much moisture entering your home can cause condensation buildup in your window panes or bubbling paint. Whenever you cook or bathe, run your exhaust fans. Keep them on for 20-30 minutes after you’re finished, as you want to pull out any excessive moisture. Ideally, the humidity levels should be between 40 and 50 percent. Opening some windows for about 15 minutes a day (even during the winter) can also help control humidity.
- Maintain the inside of your home
Home maintenance doesn’t stop outdoors – as there are many indoor tasks that go overlooked. Among these, you’ll want to:
- Change the air conditioner and furnace filters
- Replace the batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
- Inspect the sink, shower, and bath caulking for deterioration and mold
This may be a good time to focus on home maintenance items you might otherwise postpone. Take care of your home now and you’ll be glad you did in the long-run.
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CDSPI Home and Auto Insurance is underwritten by The Personal Insurance Company and distributed by CDSPI Advisory Services Inc. Home Insurance is not currently available to residents of Quebec. Auto Insurance is not available to residents of Quebec, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and British Columbia.