(Please use caution and adhere to all safety regulations during your home maintenance inspection)
Spring has sprung in the Las Vegas valley! It’s time to do a home health checkup and prevent the extreme summer heat from ruining your bank account and your investment!
Each season holds its own challenges when you live in the desert, but here are a few simple steps that can prevent those annual summer $$ loses.
Let’s start outside:
High winds and cold weather can take a toll on our roofs during the winter, so take a look at your shingles/roof tiles and check for loose, sliding or fallen pieces. Extremes in temperature here in the Valley can cause roofing materials to expand and contract and eventually loosen nails, adhesive and cause bubbles to roofing sealant. While you’re at it, take a look at any gutters you have and see if there are any debris that need removed, and if any bird spikes need to be replaced or installed. These are big ticket items to repair if not caught early, so vigilance in spring time can mean less headache later.
Intense UV rays and constant sun quickly fade and break down the most trust worthy of exterior paints. Specifically, you are looking for any areas that might require touchup paint, spots of stucco damage, or door and fascia trim paint that has peeled. Not only is periodically freshening your paint good for the appearance of your home, it helps to prevent those pesky HOA violations!
Checking for torn window screens, and making sure that the seals on the windows are still in good condition is imperative in the reduction of power bills, possible water leaks from our summer storms and is also the first line of defense in keeping out insects like scorpions, ants and roaches.
The biggest drain to your wallet when summer arrives, is the malfunction of the HVAC unit on your home. Therefore, spring is the best time for prevention. Have a reputable HVAC company perform a preventative service. Not only does this keep your AC running nicely for the upcoming summer months, the technician can also alert you to the age and health of the unit, which can help you to identify when you might need to begin saving for repairs or replacement.
- As the trees begin their blooming and the weeds begin to creep in, take a walk around your home to identify any limbs that may need trimmed back from the roof, and apply weed killer where trouble spots occur. This will prevent much of your summer being spent on tedious yard work and also keep HOA violations at bay.
- Take a few moments to manually test your irrigation system for proper function. Also check bubblers, pop up sprinkler heads, the vacuum breaker and any exposed pipes to be sure nothing is leaking or has been damaged.
- Dead plant material should be bagged and thrown out, and replacement of any dying or dead shrubs, flowers or trees should be done after the threat of front has passed. Please keep in mind that some plants and trees will appear dead, when in fact they are not. So be sure to know what type of plants you are dealing with, so as not to waste money and time on replacement of plants that did not require it.
- Spring is also a good time to apply fertilizer and pesticide in and around plant beds, to boost growth, and prevent insect nesting.
Let’s move indoors:
Smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors and fire extinguishers:
Annual testing and battery replacement in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors is imperative. Whether your home is tenant occupied or owner occupied, these preventative measures are the simplest way to protect people and your investment.
Spring time is a good time to spend a little extra on your disposable AC filters. Since there is so much pollen carried by the wind during the spring season here in Las Vegas, installing the higher quality filters will help to reduce allergens indoors.
Running a cleaning cycle on in-home appliances will ensure proper functioning. Take the time to read up about any special requirements that your appliance have when it comes to maintaining them, and replace or clean any filters that need it. As a side note, don’t forget about your over-the-range microwave filters!
Hot water heaters:
Our hard water here leads to the early demise of water heaters, but there are typically warning signs that can be observed, even by the novice eye. Take note of the following:
- Corrosion around the intake/output lines
- Age of the water heater itself can be a giveaway (some dates are printed; others you may have to look up using the make/model) Anything over 5 years old, means you should start saving your coins!
- Signs of previous leaks, even if there is no sign of current leaking
Take these simple notes and start off spring right, with the knowledge to help you get through the rest of the year with ease. And remember that when in doubt, call a professional!