Home maintenance tips 101 | SteamboatToday.com

Home maintenance tips 101

Steamboat’s long, snow-filled winters can take their toll on your home. Here are a few mud season tips to maintain your home’s value and catch issues before they become expensive repairs.

Exterior inspection

Walk around your home’s exterior to inspect roofs, walls, windows and foundation.

Roof: Climbing up on your roof isn’t necessary. Identify problem areas with a keen eye or binoculars. Have any shingles shifted, or are they damaged or missing? How about shingles that are popped up? Any water spots on ceilings or drips down an exterior wall? All of these issues can lead to leaking roofs and require attention.

Walls: Look for trouble spots like water stains, cracks, damaged areas or knots that have popped out, especially under eaves and near gutter downspouts. Water stains normally indicate that your gutters are not adequately containing roof runoff, or you have a flashing problem. Openings like missing wood knots or damaged areas may create entryways for insects or other critters.

Foundations: Inspect any visible foundation cracks. Repairing them isn’t a DIY job; bring in a foundation specialist with an injection system to chemically bond cracks.

Decks and patios: Whether wood or composite, clean your deck annually with warm water and mild detergent. If the finish is compromised, schedule a clean, stain and reseal. Also look for any damaged or warped boards that need to be replaced.

Windows: Have condensation or a light haze inside the glass on your double- or triple-paned windows? If so, the pane’s weather seal is compromised and that window should be replaced. Interior window condensation can lead to sash mildew, which needs to be treated with a bleach solution and then the sashes sanded, stained and varnished.

Interior maintenance

General cleaning: Focus on areas that get neglected during winter. Dust or vacuum baseboards, window casings, tops of wall-mounted cabinets and ceiling fans. Launder or dry-clean fabric draperies, duvet covers, pillow shams, comforters and throw pillow covers. Use a damp cloth to clean wood and vinyl blinds. Vacuum upholstered furniture and rotate and turn mattresses. Spring is also a great time to rent a carpet cleaner for high traffic areas, or call in a professional firm for deep cleaning that will also remove dust and other allergens.

The kitchen deserves a little love as well. Wash your range hood, backsplashes and cabinets with warm water and mild detergent to remove residue. Remove and clean the filters from your range hood. In bathrooms, soap residue, heat and humidity create mold and mildew; clean them throughly. Look for missing grout or caulk, as these spots lead to water damage if not repaired.

Heating systems: Spring is a great time to get your heating system checked by a professional. In-floor radiant heating has parts that can wear out or fail, including expansion tanks, zone valve springs and control boxes. Your boiler deserves a yearly check up as well. Look for leaks or corrosion.

Leaks: Look under the kitchen and bathroom sinks. Are your connections tight, any wet spots, or new water spots? Also, check washing machine hoses for cracks, bulges or dampness.

–Doug Starkey and his wife, Cathy, own and operate Four Seasons Property Management. Info: 970-819-2728, http://www.fourseasonssteamboat.com

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