Spring arrives with a warm welcome! For those who’ve been trapped inside their homes and avoiding the cold, now is the time to conduct some home maintenance that will help you avoid big repair bills later on. Start with these 10 tasks to get your home in good shape.
1. Inspect your roof
Whether you have shingles, tin or concrete tiles, your roof is your home’s first line of defense against water damage. If you delay repairing spots on your roof that need fixing, you could find yourself facing water damage inside your home the next time a storm hits.
Also when living in the Sierra Mountains one thing to keep in mind is how much snow your roof can handle.
According to Community Services Officer Caitlin Safford….”Here are rules of thumb to calculate the anticipated snow depth for a roof or deck:
The ground snow load for Truckee Town Hall is 179 pounds per square foot
Approximate roof snow load = 0.7 x 179 = 125 pounds per square foot
Anticipated snow depth for a ground level deck = 179 / 25 = 7.2 feet
Anticipated snow depth for the roof = 125 / 25 = 5 feet
What are the warning signs that there may be too much snow on my roof or deck?
-Doors or windows have become difficult to open
-Cracking in drywall
-Beam deflection (sagging)
-Walls or posts out of plumb
-Displaced deck beams or joists at connections (commonly due to dry rot)
If you notice any of these warning signs please consider contacting a snow removal company, and/or obtaining a professional opinion from a civil or structural engineer. If you decide to shovel, take appropriate precautions to avoid slipping and shedding snow hazards, and make sure someone knows where you are and can assist you if you become injured or stuck. If you can safely do so, shovel the entire roof or deck rather than just one side or portion, as uneven snow removal can create an unbalanced load situation and increase loads on adjacent portions of the structure.
2. Pressure Wash Siding & Patios
Clean siding with a pressure washer to keep mold from growing. Check all wood surfaces for weathering and paint failure. If wood is showing through, sand the immediate area and apply a primer coat before painting. If paint is peeling, scrape loose paint and sand smooth before painting.
3. Exterior caulking & Staining
Inspect caulking and replace if deteriorating. Scrape out all of the eroding caulk and re caulk needed area. As well as inspect stain on home and patio. Touch up as needed or maybe restain altogther.
4. Window sills, door sills, and thresholds
Fill cracks, caulk edges, repaint or replace if necessary.
5. Window and door screens
Clean screening and check for holes. Gently scrub on a flat surface with soapy water. Also, patch small holes as needed. If holes are bigger than a quarter, that is plenty of room for bugs to climb in. Patch holes or replace the screen. Save bad screen to patch holes next year. Tighten or repair any loose or damaged frames and repaint. Replace broken, worn, or missing hardware. Wind can ruin screens and frames if they are allowed flap and move so make sure they are securely fastened. Tighten and lubricate door hinges and closers.
6. Hot water heater
Flush tank and clean burner area. For tank less hot water heaters a heat exchange flushing and combustion cleaning should be completed.
7. Clean or replace HVAC filters
You need to do this more than once a year. A dirty filter forces your heat, ventilation and air-conditioning system to work harder, which in turn drains your wallet.
8. Clean your dryer vent
Not all lint gets caught in the lint trap; some makes its way into the dryer vent. A clean vent will save you money by reducing the time your dryer has to run, while a plugged vent not only wastes money but could cause a house fire.
9. Check the washing machine fill hose
A leaky hose under pressure can cause major damage in a short period of time, so you want to look for cracks that could become leaks.
10. Replace the batteries in your smoke detectors
You never know when you’ll need them. Sometimes it’s a matter of life or death, so take the time to change the batteries now.
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