Catching up on home care after the long winter months? Spring into action with 25 home maintenance tips from Neil Kelly’s Handyman Services pros:
1. Review the contents of your medicine cabinets & throw away dated prescriptions & over-the-counter medicines. Be sure all medications are out of reach of children or contained in a cabinet equipped with childproof locks.
2. Clean the garage! Hold a yard sale or organize a community yard sale with neighbors. To safely dispose of paint thinners, household cleaners & pesticides, contact your city or county’s waste management department to find out the next scheduled collection of hazardous materials. (Here are some useful links for Portland, Seattle, Bend, Eugene.)
3. Clean the refrigerator, inside & out, with a mild detergent. Remove all trays & shelves, wash & dry thoroughly before replacing them. Remove old ice from ice-making tray.
4. After heavy rains, inspect your basement walls for signs of moisture. If you detect wetness, run a portable dehumidifier. If the condition persists, consult a contractor like Neil Kelly.
5. Test the pressure & temperature relief valve on your water heater by opening it & allowing some water to flow out. If little or no water flows our or it doesn’t shut off, replace it. Bad valves can cause explosions.
6. Spring is a good time to build a dog house! Make sure to provide adequate roof ventilation to allow hot air to escape. Do not use pressure-treated wood in any area where your dog might chew it up.
7. Setting your clock to Daylight Savings Time is also a good time to replace batteries in smoke & carbon monoxide detectors.
8. Inspect screens (both house & vents to attic spaces) for tears & bent frames.
9. Clean window screens. Lay them flat on a picnic table or sawhorses & scrub them with a soft bristle brush & a mild detergent solution. Rinse with a garden hose & allow to dry completely.
10. Inspect outdoor structures for deterioration – especially signs of dry rot. Use a small awl to probe posts, railings & window sills for soft spots. If you find any, plan to replace or repair them when the weather turns fair — Neil Kelly can help.
11. Prepare for the outdoor cooking season by inspecting gas grills. Remove cooking grills & thoroughly clean them with soapy water & a brush with brass bristles. Remove accumulated grease from lava rocks & ceramic briquettes by turning them over & igniting the burners. Allow 10 minutes on high heat to clean the briquettes.
12. Inspect garden hoses for leaks. Make temporary repairs with electrical tape. Pry out old washers & replace them. Don’t leave hoses connected to outdoor spigots until the danger of frost is completely over.
13. Caulk open joints, particularly around windows & doors.
14. Inspect the crawl space or basement after rains for water accumulation or excessive moisture. Look for signs of water damage on the sub floor & joists beneath bathrooms, kitchen & laundry. Find & fix leaks now or pay the price later.
15. Shut off water to the washing machine, remove the water supply hose & examine them & the washers. Replace worn & damaged ones.
16. Check fire extinguishers to make sure they are not outdated, have lost pressure or are damaged.
17. Clean gutters. Inspect gutters to ensure all spikes, straps & clips are tightly fastened. Use a garden hose to flush debris from downspouts. Make sure downspouts or splashbacks direct water at least 3-feet away from the foundation.
18. Clean roofs. Remove loose debris and note any damage caused by winter storms. Don’t let moss and algae get a foothold.
19. Wash windows, inside & out, using a solution made from 3-tablespoons of non-sudsy ammonia to 1-gallon of water. Don’t work in the direct sun – the solution will dry too fast & streak. To clean windows with real (not removable) grills, use a hacksaw to cut a squeegee so it fits in the window panes exactly.
20. Have your central air-cooling unit checked according to the recommendations of the unit’s manufacturer. Replace the filter in the forced-air system. Clean debris from the condenser or heat pump located outside.
21. Remove mineral deposits from faucet aerators & shower heads by soaking parts in white vinegar & scrubbing with an old toothbrush.
22. Have swimming pools cleaned. Inspect & service pool liners & filters.
23. Dust ceiling fans.
24. Set thermostats & automatic sprinkler systems to adjust for weather changes.
25. Before placing metal patio furniture outdoors, coat with auto polish.
Every home needs a handyman, and every home needs Neil Kelly’s Handyman Services. Our experienced and professional team of craftspeople have the resources and the expertise to handle any home improvement, repair, or maintenance project on your list – large or small. Don’t let little issues turn into big headaches down the road. Connect with one of our specialists today!