As the dreary winter days turn into the promise of spring, it's the perfect time to think of how you can prepare your home for the warm months ahead. All sorts of things may have happened over the past few months. Snow and wind may have damaged your roof or landscaping. Debris is probably clogging your air conditioning unit. As the weather warms back up it's important to thoroughly inspect and clean inside and outside your home so you can be ready for spring.

  • Clean your air conditioning unit and/or get it inspected. Remove any leaves from inside or around the unit and dust, vacuum or spray the condenser fins to get off remaining dirt and debris. After you do that, replace the filter inside the house.
  • Examine your roof and siding to make sure winter storms didn't cause any damage. Cracking ice, downed tree limbs and the weight of snow could have dislodged shingles or siding. This can create a hole in your building envelope, letting in outside air, bugs and small creatures and letting temperature-controlled air out into the world. Fix, or hire someone else to fix any issues you find.
  • Caulk around windows and doors to seal any cracks. Again, winter weather could have damaged the seals around your doors and windows. Check to make sure you don't see or feel any cracks. If you do, use a caulking gun to fill them.
  • Plant native or USDA Zone-appropriate flowers, trees and bushes. If you need to replace or add any plants to your yard, try to make sure they grow naturally in your climate. This means they will require less water and will thrive with less care.
  • Don't overwater the lawn. Your grass probably needs less water than you think. The general rule is 1 inch of water a week. In many places, rain provides most if not all of this.
  • Open the windows on warmer days. Don't forget to turn off the heat and open the doors and windows when the temperature warms up. This allows your home to air out any built-up pollutants or humidity.
  • Switch the direction of your ceiling fan. In the winter, your ceiling fans should be rotating clockwise on low speed to distribute the rising warm air around the room. In the summer, the fan should turn counter-clockwise to force air down into the room to help cool its occupants.
  • Clean off the refrigerator coils. As the weather warms and your pets start to shed, more hair will collect on the coils making the refrigerator work harder. A long-handled brush is perfect for cleaning coils on the bottom or back of the refrigerator.
  • Change the settings for lights that are on a timer. You may have set an inside light on a timer so there's light when you get home. Now that the afternoons are getting longer, you may be able to reset it for later or turn it off altogether.
  • Clean the grill. In preparation for cooking outdoors to keep the kitchen cool, pull out your grill from the garage and clean it up. If it's a gas grill, make sure you have a full tank and check the lines to make sure there aren't any holes or cracks.

Related Articles