Sand, slush, and snowstorms: three sure signs of early spring in the U.P.! While we may not get to enjoy blossoms and butterflies for a while yet, it IS a great time to start thinking about spring home maintenance.
See, there are actually some spring home maintenance tasks you can do even on crappy U.P. spring days. And that can help to relieve that pitiful feeling that “everyone else in the country is experiencing spring and what about us poor Yoopers?” (Well OK, give us a brownie point for trying, anyway.)
In all seriousness, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan is known for its long, harsh winters. And we all know these can take a toll on your home! By taking care of some basic spring home maintenance tasks this season, you can help ensure that your home is in good condition and ready for another year of Michigan weather.
The Yooper Spring Home Maintenance Checklist
Here are ten important tasks to add to your spring home maintenance checklist for homes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan:
- Inspect Your Roof
Winter weather can cause damage to your roof, so it’s important to inspect it for any signs of damage in the spring. Once it’s clear of snow, look for missing or damaged shingles or other signs of wear. You should also check for any leaks or water damage inside your home.
If you’re not comfortable inspecting your roof yourself, consider hiring a professional to do it for you. Roof inspection is a standard part of every home inspection we do, and we have the equipment to do it safely. Just be sure to schedule at a time when the snow is gone – we can’t inspect what we can’t see!
- Clean Your Gutters
Your gutters can become clogged with leaves and debris over the winter, so it’s important to clean them out in the spring. Clogged gutters can cause water to back up and damage your roof or siding, so be sure to remove any debris. Check for any damage while you’re up there!
- Check Your Foundation
Winter weather can also take a toll on your home’s foundation. That’s why it’s important to check for any cracks or other signs of damage in the spring. If you do find any issues, be sure to have them repaired promptly to prevent further damage.
- Service Your HVAC System
Spring is a great time to have your HVAC system serviced, since you’ll be switching from heating to cooling soon. A professional technician can inspect your system, clean the filters and coils, and make any necessary repairs to ensure that it’s ready to keep you comfortable all summer long.
While we’re on this topic, it’s worth a mention: we always highly recommend to the home buyers we work with that they get on a service plan with their HVAC company. Maybe it’s a Yooper thing, but it always seems like the big cold snaps always come through on a weekend or holiday – and that’s when everyone’s furnaces go out! When that happens, U.P. HVAC guys work overtime, and they can’t get to everyone right away. Who do you think they prioritize? You bet – their contract customers. We think it’s worth the peace of mind – how about you?
- Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Make sure that your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in good working order by testing them each spring. Replace the batteries if necessary, and replace any detectors that are more than ten years old.
- Inspect Your Windows and Doors
Check your windows and doors for any cracks, gaps, or damage that could allow air to escape or enter your home. Replace any damaged weatherstripping, and consider upgrading to more energy-efficient windows and doors if necessary. This is also a good time for exterior window cleaning.
Don’t forget to check your window and door screens to keep your home bug-free. (Your family may agree that this is the most important of all spring home maintenance tasks in the U.P.!)
- Clean Your Chimney
If you have a fireplace or wood stove, having your chimney cleaned and inspected needs to be included on your list of important spring home maintenance tasks. It will prevent the buildup of creosote, which can cause a fire. A professional chimney sweep can help ensure that your chimney is safe to use.
Technically you can have your chimney cleaned at any time, but we recommend spring once it warms up and you’re no longer burning wood regularly. It’s much easier to schedule this service this time of year, and that way you’ll be ready to go even if you get an early cold snap next fall.
- Clean Your Dryer Vent
Clogged dryer vents can be a fire hazard. Be sure to clean them out each spring. Disconnect the vent from the dryer and use a brush to remove any lint or debris that has accumulated.
- Check Your Sump Pump
If you have a sump pump in your basement, be sure to check it each spring to make sure that it’s in good working order. Pour some water into the pit to make sure that it’s pumping correctly, and replace it if necessary.
- Inspect Exterior Woodwork and Siding
Inspecting the exterior woodwork and siding of your home is an essential task to add to your spring home maintenance checklist. The harsh winter weather and moisture can cause damage to your home’s exterior, such as rot, warping, or splitting.
Inspect your home’s siding, trim, and fascia boards for any signs of damage, such as cracks or peeling paint. Check for any areas where moisture has penetrated the wood and replace or repair any damaged areas. Taking care of any issues in the spring will help prevent further damage from occurring and ensure that your home’s exterior is protected from the elements.
x Reasons to Consider Adding a Home Inspection to Your Spring Home Maintenance Checklist
By taking care of these important spring home maintenance tasks, you can help ensure that your home is in good condition and ready for another year of Upper Peninsula weather.
If you’re not comfortable performing any of these tasks yourself, it’s perfectly fine to hire a professional to help. And because so many of these spring home maintenance tasks involve inspection, this is a good time to talk about our homeowners inspection services.
Home inspections aren’t just for home buyers and sellers. There are many reasons to hire a home inspector to help with home maintenance, including:
- We have the proper equipment and expertise to do a safe and thorough job with routine property maintenance inspections
- Hiring a home inspector will save you the time it takes to do the inspection yourself
- We are professionals at this and often find things that homeowners (even ones who are contractors or engineers) miss
- We can help you identify which tasks are most important so you can budget your time and money for repairs and maintenance wisely
A home inspector can help you identify any issues that need to be addressed and can give you peace of mind knowing that your home is in good condition. Because U.P. weather can be rough on homes, we suggest having your home inspected every 3-5 years. If you haven’t had one done recently, consider scheduling a professional home inspection with us this spring!