Spring and fall are the ideal times to add those semi-annual honey-do home maintenance items to your list in order to protect your home from elemental and environmental wear and tear that occurs throughout the year. Doing some simple maintenance such as cleaning out your rain gutters, repairing chipped caulking and paint, and reattaching loose trim or downspouts could easily save you thousands of dollars in extensive repairs caused by water damage, infestations, and mold or dry rot issues.
Cleaning your Gutters
Rain gutters are an area of the home that often gets overlooked when performing regular yard or home maintenance, because of their out of sight location and tendency to be camouflaged. Ignoring them for an extended period of time can in fact cost you a bundle though. The purpose of rain gutters are to prevent water from seeping into trim edges or lingering along roof lines building up ice dams or puddles that create gapping and dry rot.
Unfortunately water is not all that gets caught in your rain gutters, flying debris such as dirt, leaves, twigs, and grass also build up in rain gutters creating ideal places for birds, bees, and insects to nest clogging the drainage system and in turn causing extensive damage to wood trim and roof lines. The best way to avoid these issues is to thoroughly clean your gutters semi-annually.
Over time downspouts become dislodged from water drainage, ice build-up, accidental bumping, and wind. Once your downspouts become loosened your rain gutter system stops working correctly; leading to the same issues that not cleaning your rain gutters would. In order to keep your drainage system functioning to its fullest, you need to not only clean your gutters, but also regularly inspect and repair or replace downspouts that have become loose, damaged, or separated from the rain gutter system.
Avoid Dry Rot
Dry rot occurs when unprotected wood is exposed to rain, snow, ice, and wind. Once dry rot takes hold it will spread throughout the adjoining wood infrastructure weakening and destroying those areas that it affects; creating a costly repair bill.
To avoid dry rot, be sure to inspect your home’s painted trim and window framing for chipped paint and caulking. These are the areas where moisture will leak in and saturate unprotected wood leading to dry rot. If you find chipped paint or caulking be sure to scrape away any cracked or crumbled material around the area and dry the wood underneath completely before reapplying paint and caulking. This will prevent mold issues that could arise from painting over wet or damp wood.
Spending a little time doing some basic home repairs and maintenance such as cleaning rain gutters, repairing downspouts, and correctly performing paint and caulk touch-ups to exposed wood is a cost effective way to save you from expensive and inconvenient home repairs. Performing these tasks regularly or at the very least semi-annually will keep your home in tip top shape without spending a ton of money or time to fix issues that could have easily been avoided.