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KATHY'S HOME & GARDEN TIPS - SPRINGTIME JOBS AROUND THE HOUSE

With a little warm weather coming it’s a good time to tackle some of those jobs around the house and yard that can prevent costly repairs later.

Flush out the water heater through the drain valve. Let the water drain out completely. This will remove sediment that can cause damage and shorten the life of the unit. It will also run more efficiently.

Check interior and exterior stairs for damage and tripping hazards. Make sure handrails are present and secure.

Make sure the foundation around the house is free of debris and vegetation. Overgrown vegetation can be an invitation to insects, rodents and moisture. Also, large roots can damage the foundation. Never plant shrubs or other large plants within 3 feet of the foundation.

Make sure all exterior drains are clear and running freely. With heavy spring rains coming, water can pool and leak into the basement.

Check gutters for debris. Clogged gutters retain water that can splash up and damage shingles. Check the roof. Make sure to replace missing or damaged shingles. Check all the flashing and caulk if need be. Extend downspouts or install splash guards. This will divert water away from the foundation. You can see a trend here with water. It is one of the most destructive things around the house.

Check all the caulking around windows and doors. The caulking you did in the fall may have deteriorated over the winter. As we don’t want to lose heat in the winter we want to keep the heat out in the summer.

Make sure outside air conditioning units are clear of debris and vegetation. There should be no plantings close to the unit. There should be unobstructed air flow all around to ensure efficiency and long life for the unit.

Clean out the dryer vent hose. This is one of the leading causes of house fires. Greasy kitchen exhaust fans can be a hazard also. Remove the filter and run through the dish washer. Clean the rest of the fan with degreaser and hot water.

Check your trees and shrubs for winter damage. Prune accordingly. Make sure tree branches are not too close to the house or obstructing outdoor wires.

Doing these few easy projects can often prevent big costly jobs along the way.

KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO
Posted: Tuesday, March 15, 2016 10:33 AM by Dean's Team

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